Rice found to be contaminated with heavy metals
Ten percent of the rice grown in China was found to be contaminated with harmful heavy metals due to the pollution from the nation’s rapid industrialization. Studies showed that large amounts of Chinese rice tainted with heavy metals like cadmium.
During China’s fast paced industrialization, mining activities have sprouted everywhere releasing heavy metals into the environment such as cadmium, arsenic, mercury and other harmful metals. These harmful metals spread through the air and water polluting a large part of China’s land. The resulting pollutants led to a complete chain of food contamination that is existed for years. Studies also focused on several rural villages in the southern China that are located near mines and industrial areas also led to health problems like bone diseases were found among the elderly.
Rice has the strongest tendency to absorb cadmium, which seeps into the water that is used for irrigation near the lead, tin and copper mines. A team from the Nanjing Agriculture University Agricultural Resources and Environmental Institute tested around 100 rice samples that were bought from the markets in the six regions in 2007. They team found 10 percent of the rice samples contained higher levels of cadmium from the national standard rice. Similar tests from rice samples taken from the Jiangxi and Guangdong also contained excessive cadmium.
City residents should not be overly concern with the rice contaminated with cadmium, since most of the rice sold in the cities comes from a diversity of regions and farmlands therefore lowering the risk of being contaminated.