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Savanna Journal of Basic and Applied Sciences 4(1):17-26
Assessment of Heavy Metals Content in Selected Vegetables from Irrigation Farms in Minna, Nigeria
Abdulhamid, Z., Agbaji, E. B., Yakubu, M. and Musah, M

ABSTRACT
Heavy metals pollution of the environment majorly by anthropogenic activities has been widely reported. This study was to assess the level of heavy metals in three staple vegetables commonly cultivated in Minna. The vegetables were Amaranthus hybridus (spinach), Hibiscus esculentus (Okra) and Telfairia occidentalis (fluted pumpkin leaves). These vegetables were collected from seven selected farms at Okada Road, Kpakungu, Dutsen kura, Keteren Gwari, Chanchaga, Mandela and Sauka ka huta areas of Minna. The samples were analyzed for the presence of six heavy metals (cadmium, copper, iron, manganese, nickel and zinc) using standard analytical methods which include digestion using nitric acid and analysis with atomic absorption spectrometry. Results of analyses showed Amaranthus hybridus: Cd (4.65-4.85 mg/kg); Cu (4.31-30.17 mg/kg); Fe (27.06-683.95 mg/kg); Mn (13.01-81.00 mg/kg); Ni (1.22-1.44 mg/kg); Zn (2.48-164.78 mg/kg), Hibiscus esculentus: Cu (11.22-19.90 mg/kg); Fe (114.71-189.86 mg/kg); Mn (33.26-103.61 mg/kg); Ni (1.24-1.54 mg/kg); Zn (38.81-97.95 mg/kg), Telfairia occidentalis: Cd (5.11-7.16 mg/kg); Cu (4.9636.93 mg/kg); Fe (116.72-592.28 mg/kg); Mn (95.67-572.72 mg/kg); Ni (1.36-3.42 mg/kg); Zn (7.25-69.06 mg/kg) across the seven farms. Average concentration of the six metals in the different vegetables from all farms varied in the following order; Spinach: Fe>Zn>Mn>Cu>Cd>Ni; okra: Fe>Zn>Mn>Cu>Ni and fluted pumpkin leaves: Fe>Mn>Zn>Cu>Cd>Ni. The transfer factor (TF) for Cd (0.49 and 0.00), Fe (0.24 and 0.08) and Ni (0.07 and 0.08) in spinach and okra were low. Results obtained revealed the vegetables were safe for consumption.