1School of Molecular Sciences, Victoria University of Technology, Melbourne, Victoria,
2Food Safety, Authenticity and Quality Unit, Victoria University of Technology
An analysis of metals in Australian wheat, particularly certain heavy metals, is important to show that Australia produces safe high quality wheat and is also a requirement for export purposes. In this work, cadmium levels were determined from wheat samples obtained from grower loads delivered to silos in Western Australia, Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia and Queensland that were sourced from the Australian Wheat Board. In addition, this study took into account the soil types through the regions from where the samples were obtained. The pH of the soils was also considered in the overall data analysis as it has been stated in the literature that pH is important in the bioavailability of metals uptake by plants.
The method of analysis employed comprised extraction of the cadmium by acid digestion followed by atomic absorption spectroscopy using a graphite furnace. A series of different wheat genotypes were studied. The findings in this work showed that the cadmium levels were extremely low and the mean values ranged from less than 0.01 to 0.22 mg/kg, in most cases these were lower than the levels of cadmium from other wheat producing countries that were also analyzed in this