Emerging halogenated flame retardants and hexabromocyclododecanes in food samples from an e-waste processing area in Vietnam†
This study reports concentrations of selected emerging halogenated flame retardants (HFRs) and hexabromocyclododecanes (HBCDs) in foodstuffs sourced from an e-waste processing area in Vietnam and two reference sites in Vietnam and Japan. Concentrations of all target HFRs in e-waste-impacted samples in this study exceed significantly (p < 0.05) those detected in the controls, suggesting that e-waste processing activities exert a substantial impact on local environmental contamination and human dietary exposure. Significant linear positive correlations in concentrations of syn-Dechlorane Plus (DP) and anti-DP were found between soils and those in co-located chicken samples (p < 0.05). This implies that soil is an important exposure source of DPs in chickens at our sampling sites. The estimated dietary intakes of emerging HFRs in this study were 170 and 420 ng per kg bw per day for adults and children, respectively, while daily ingestions of HBCDs were estimated to be 480 and 1500 ng per kg bw per day for adults and children, respectively. Exposure at the site monitored in this study exceeds substantially the estimates of dietary exposure to HBCDs in e-waste processing sites and non-e-waste processing areas elsewhere.