Fertilizer industry officials warned their members about the increased chance that imported Chinese zinc fertilizers could contain high levels of cadmium.
A memo sent by officials of The Fertilizer Institute told fertilizer manufacturers, importers and distributors that a U.S. Department of Agriculture researcher warned that zinc fertilizers containing high amounts of cadmium have been appearing in other countries. The USDA warning said the levels recorded in other countries suggest that hazardous heavy metals may have been purposefully dumped into fertilizers as a way to dispose of them.
"The point of our communication to members is to protect not only the industry but the folks who buy our products," said Bill Herz, vice president of scientific programs for TFI, in an interview with DTN. "We always recommend that (members) look at state and federal regulations and do some spot testing (of their own) for heavy metals."