Cadmium: Uptake by Vegetables from Superphosphate in Soil

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Science  17 May 1963:
Vol. 140, Issue 3568, pp. 819-820
DOI: 10.1126/science.140.3568.819


Phosphates in fertilizers contain cadmium. When vegetables usually devoid of cadmium were grown in soil heavily fertilized with 20 percent superphosphate, they absorbed it. Vegetables normally containing cadmium absorbed larger quantities in the presence of superphosphate and little or none in its absence. The superphosphate showed 7.25 parts of cadmium per million. Five grains usually containing cadmium were grown in unfertilized soil poor in this element; four did not absorb it. Phosphate fertilizers may be a source of the cadmium in some vegetable foods.