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Microplastics from consumer plastic food containers: Are we consuming it?

Authors
  • Fadare, Oluniyi O1
  • Wan, Bin2
  • Guo, Liang-Hong3
  • Zhao, Lixia1
  • 1 Key Laboratory of Environmental Biotechnology, Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100085, China; College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100049, China. , (China)
  • 2 Key Laboratory of Environmental Biotechnology, Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100085, China; College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100049, China. Electronic address: [email protected] , (China)
  • 3 Key Laboratory of Environmental Biotechnology, Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100085, China; The Third Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou Medical University, Guangzhou, 510150, China. , (China)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Chemosphere
Publication Date
Aug 01, 2020
Volume
253
Pages
126787–126787
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2020.126787
PMID: 32464756
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Microplastic (MP) accumulation in the environment has become an issue of human and environmental importance. Great efforts were made recently to identify the sources of MP exposure to humans and their release into the environment. Here, we employed spectroscopic techniques to identify and characterize MP in consumer plastic food containers that are, in huge quantity, used for food delivery and disposable plastic cups for daily drinking. We determined the average weight of isolated MP per pack to be 12 ± 5.12 mg, 38 ± 5.29 mg, and 3 ± 1.13 mg for the round-shaped, rectangular-shaped plastic container and disposable plastic cups, respectively, with various morphological features including cubic, spherical, rod-like as well as irregular shapes, which may either be consumed by humans or released into the environment. This study demonstrates that new plastic containers can be an important source of direct human and environmental exposure to microplastics. Most importantly, our results indicated that necessary attention must be given to morphological features of realistic MPs when evaluating their risks to humans and the environment. Copyright © 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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