Metals - analysis

The Swedish Food Agency performs analyses of heavy metals to check limit values in accordance with European Commission Regulation (EC) No. 915/2023 setting maximum levels for certain contaminants in foodstuffs. The Swedish Food Agency also manages projects to map various metals in foods, especially cadmium and inorganic arsenic.

Lead, cadmium, mercury and arsenic are all in the top ten on the World Health Organization (WHO) list of chemicals of major public health concern, making it important to check their levels in foods. These levels then provide one of several parameters for assessing the level of risk the substances pose to human health.

Our organisation also analyses beneficial elements for the food database; for example, manganese, iron and zinc. The results of these analyses are also used as a basis for risk and benefit assessments.

Accredited methods

Listed below are the accredited methods we use.

Please contact us if you would like further information and/or prices for the analyses we offer.

Joakim Engman
Head of Unit Natural Toxins and Metals

Metals Limit of quantification 
dry samples
Limit of quantification 
wet samples
Analysis technique

Aluminum (Al)



Vanadium (V) 0.27 0.053 ICP-MS
Chromium (Cr) 0.069 0.014 ICP-MS
Manganese (Mn) 0.061 0.012 ICP-MS
Iron (Fe) 0.87 0.17 ICP-MS
Cobalt (Co) 0.006 0.001 ICP-MS
Nickel (Ni) 0.13 0.025 ICP-MS
Copper (Cu) 0.112 0.022 ICP-MS
Zinc (Zn) 1.0 0.21 ICP-MS
Arsenic (As) 0.037 0.008 ICP-MS
Molybdenum (Mo) 0.012 0.002 ICP-MS
Silver (Ag) 0.014 0.003 ICP-MS
Cadmium (Cd) 0.006 0.001 ICP-MS
Tin (Sn) 0.076 0.015 ICP-MS
Mercury (Hg) 0.036 0.0073 ICP-MS
Lead (Pb) 0.0064 0.0013 ICP-MS

Unorganic arsenic 




Laboratory services

Reviewed 2023-08-23