Carcinogens in Food: Evaluating the Presence of Cadmium, Lead, in Poultry Meat in South India

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Departmen of Life Sciences, CHRIST (Deemed to be University), Bangalore, Karnataka, India.

2 Department of Food Science and Biotechnology, College of Life Science, Sejong University, Seoul 05006, Republic of Korea.

3 Bioknowl Insights Private Limited, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu 641046, India.

4 Department of Zoology, School of Bioscience, Avinashilingam Institute for Home Sciences and Higher Education for Women , Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India.

5 Computational Biology Laboratory, Department of Bioinformatics, Bharathiar University, Coimbatore-641046, Tamil Nadu, India.

6 Department of Human Genetics and Molecular Biology, Bharathiar University, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India.

7 Nehru Arts & Science College (Affiliated to Bharathiar University), Coimbatore, Tamilnadu, India.

8 School of Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200241, China.


Objective: Local chickens were spontaneously sampled and slaughtered in the central markets of Coimbatore, Erode, and Namakkal districts, South India. Materials and Methods: Wet digestion was used to extract lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), and zinc (Zn) in their blood and selected different organs (intestine, breast, liver, and gizzard), and their concentrations were measured using an atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Results: Apart from the blood of chickens from Coimbatore and Namakkal, where Pb was not found, the concentrations of Pb in the blood and organs of chickens from the three towns ranged from 1.8 to 8.33 mg/kg, exceeding the maximum tolerance thresholds (0.1 mg/kg) in internal organs of poultry birds. Except for the intestine of chickens from the three areas, Cd was only found in the heart, blood, and gizzard of Erode chickens, as well as the liver and gizzard of Namakkal chickens, in concentrations ranging from 0.13 to 0.58. According to threshold level, the upper limit met the maximum limits (0.5 mg/kg). Zn was found in all sections of chickens from the three selected districts, with concentrations ranging from 4.96 to 174.17 mg/kg. Conclusion: Its concentrations were within the permissible limits (10-50 mg/kg) in some areas of certain chickens, but it surpassed the permissible limit in the liver of chicken from Coimbatore. Any organs and blood from local chickens sold in Coimbatore, Erode, and Namakkal areas can be hazardous to one’s health.


Main Subjects

Volume 22, Issue 11
November 2021
Pages 3507-3511
  • Receive Date: 24 April 2021
  • Revise Date: 14 September 2021
  • Accept Date: 13 November 2021
  • First Publish Date: 13 November 2021