Assessment of Multi-Nutrients and Heavy Metals in Inorganic Fertilizers Widely Used by Indonesian Farmers Using NAA

Sri Murniasih(1), Sri Juari Santosa(2*), Roto Roto(3)

(1) Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Sekip Utara, Yogyakarta 55281, Indonesia; Center for Science and Accelerator Technology, The National Nuclear Energy Agency, Jl. Babarsari No. 21, Yogyakarta 55281, Indonesia
(2) Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Sekip Utara, Yogyakarta 55281, Indonesia
(3) Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Sekip Utara, Yogyakarta 55281, Indonesia
(*) Corresponding Author


This research aims to determine the concentration of multi-nutrients and heavy metals and investigate the correlation among them in the seven inorganic fertilizers in Indonesia. Sample analysis was carried out using the NAA method. The highest concentrations of macro-nutrients were K (36.54 %) and Cl (18.09%) found in the KCl sample, while Ca (23.01%) was observed in the TSP sample. In the case of micro-nutrients, the highest concentrations of Se (0.36 mg/kg), Ti (597 mg/kg), Br (1.84%), and Ni (2.46 mg/kg) detected in the NPK sample. Meanwhile, the highest concentrations of Co (19.57 mg/kg) and Na (1.40%) were measured in the ZA sample, while Mg, with the highest concentration of 1.78%, was found in the KMgS sample. The micro-nutrients with the highest concentration detected in the TSP sample were Cr (45.96 mg/kg), Zn (342.6 mg/kg), and Mn (1331 mg/kg). Non-essential elements such as U, V, La, Sb, Sm, Th, Hf, Sr, Cs, Tb, Sc, Rb, Ta, and Eu were also detected in the fertilizer samples with the highest concentrations in the TSP sample. Statistical tests of multi-nutrient and heavy metals concentrations indicated that multi-nutrient and heavy metals in fertilizers are complex.


inorganic fertilizer; multi-nutrients; heavy metals; essential elements; non-essential elements

Full Text:

Full Text PDF


da Costa Mello S, Tonhati R, Neto DD, et al (2018) Response of tomato to polyhalite as a multi-nutrient fertilizer in southeast Brazil. Journal of Plant Nutrition 41:2126–2140

Bargaz A, Lyamlouli K, Chtouki M, et al (2018) Soil Microbial Resources for Improving Fertilizers Efficiency in an Integrated Plant Nutrient Management System. Frontiers in Microbiology 9:

Schut AGT, Giller KE (2020) Soil-based, field-specific fertilizer recommendations are a pipe-dream. Geoderma 380:114680

Zunaidi AA, Lim LH, Metali F (2020) Assessments of Heavy Metals in Commercially Available Fertilizers in Brunei Darussalam. Agricultural Research 10:234–242

Michelson HC, Fairbairn A, Maertens A, et al (2018) Misperceived Quality: Fertilizer in Tanzania. SSRN Electronic Journal

Baloch S (2021) Essential and Non-Essential Elements in Medicinal Plants: A Review. Biomedical Journal of Scientific & Technical Research 33:

Ohlsson KEA (2012) Uncertainty budget for multi-elemental analysis of plant nutrients in conifer foliar material using inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry (ICP-AES). Accreditation and Quality Assurance 17:301–313

Trziszka T, Dobrzański Z, Chojnacka K, et al (2021) Assessment of Macro-, Micro-, Trace, and Ultratrace Element Concentration in Green-Legged Partridge Hens’ Eggs from a Free-Range System. Agriculture 11:473

Beygi M, Jalali M (2019) Assessment of trace elements (Cd, Cu, Ni, Zn) fractionation and bioavailability in vineyard soils from the Hamedan, Iran. Geoderma 337:1009–1020

Wang X, Liu W, Li Z, et al (2020) Effects of long-term fertilizer applications on peanut yield and quality and plant and soil heavy metal accumulation. Pedosphere 30:555–562

Verbeeck M, Salaets P, Smolders E (2020) Trace element concentrations in mineral phosphate fertilizers used in Europe: A balanced survey. Science of The Total Environment 712:136419

Franklin RE, Duis L, Brown R, Kemp T (2005) Trace Element Content of Selected Fertilizers and Micronutrient Source Materials*. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis 36:1591–1609

Liu Y-M, Liu D-Y, Zhang W, et al (2020) Health risk assessment of heavy metals (Zn, Cu, Cd, Pb, As and Cr) in wheat grain receiving repeated Zn fertilizers. Environmental Pollution 257:113581

Li H, Yang Z, Dai M, et al (2020) Input of Cd from agriculture phosphate fertilizer application in China during 2006–2016. Science of The Total Environment 698:134149

Qian L, Zhang C, Zuo F, et al (2019) Effects of fertilizers and pesticides on the mineral elements used for the geographical origin traceability of rice. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis 83:103276

Ugulu I, Ahmad K, Khan ZI, et al (2020) Effects of organic and chemical fertilizers on the growth, heavy metal/metalloid accumulation, and human health risk of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). Environmental Science and Pollution Research 28:12533–12545

Mirzaei M, Marofi S, Solgi E, et al (2019) Ecological and health risks of soil and grape heavy metals in long-term fertilized vineyards (Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari province of Iran). Environmental Geochemistry and Health 42:27–43

Ali H, Khan E, Ilahi I (2019) Environmental Chemistry and Ecotoxicology of Hazardous Heavy Metals: Environmental Persistence, Toxicity, and Bioaccumulation. Journal of Chemistry 2019:1–14

Krauss M, Wilcke W, Kobza J, Zech W (2002) Predicting heavy metal transfer from soil to plant: potential use of Freundlich-type functions. Journal of Plant Nutrition and Soil Science 165:3

Tang L, Deng S, Tan D, et al (2019) Heavy metal distribution, translocation, and human health risk assessment in the soil-rice system around Dongting Lake area, China. Environmental Science and Pollution Research 26:17655–17665

Andrade C (2019) The P Value and Statistical Significance: Misunderstandings, Explanations, Challenges, and Alternatives. Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine 41:210–215

Colquhoun D (2017) The reproducibility of research and the misinterpretation of p -values. Royal Society Open Science 4:171085

Cesana BM (2018) What p-value must be used as the Statistical Significance Threshold? P<0.005, P<0.01, P<0.05 or no value at all? Biomedical Journal of Scientific & Technical Research 6:

Waheed S, Siddique N, Zaidi JH (2011) Participation in IAEA proficiency test exercise on major, minor and trace elements in ancient Chinese ceramic (IAEA-CU-2006-06) using low power research reactor. Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry 289:765–771

Etienne P, Diquelou S, Prudent M, et al (2018) Macro and Micronutrient Storage in Plants and Their Remobilization When Facing Scarcity: The Case of Drought. Agriculture 8:14

Bacilieri FS, de Vasconcelos ACP, Lana RMQ, et al (2017) Titanium (Ti) in plant nutrition - A review. Australian Journal of Crop Science 11:382–386

Rout GR, Sahoo S (2015) Role of iron in plant growth and metabolism. Reviews in Agricultural Science 3:1–24

Bojórquez-Quintal E, Escalante-Magaña C, Echevarría-Machado I, Martínez-Estévez M (2017) Aluminum, a Friend or Foe of Higher Plants in Acid Soils. Frontiers in Plant Science 8:

Molina M, Aburto F, Calderón R, et al (2009) Trace Element Composition of Selected Fertilizers Used in Chile: Phosphorus Fertilizers as a Source of Long-Term Soil Contamination. Soil and Sediment Contamination: An International Journal 18:497–511

Gambuś F, Wieczorek J (2012) Pollution of fertilizers with heavy metals. Ecological Chemistry and Engineering A 19:353–360

Rui Y, Shen J, Zhang F (2008) Application of ICP-MS to determination of heavy metal content of heavy metals in two kinds of N fertilizer. Guang Pu Xue Yu Guang Pu Fen Xi 28:2425–2437

Latifi Z, Jalali M (2018) Trace element contaminants in mineral fertilizers used in Iran. Environmental Science and Pollution Research 25:31917–31928

Benson N (2014) Trace Metals Levels in Inorganic Fertilizers Commercially Available in Nigeria. Journal of Scientific Research and Reports 3:610–620

Xu F, Rui Y-K, Lin Q, Zhang F-S (2009) The content of nutrient elements of plant in KCl fertilizer. Guang Pu Xue Yu Guang Pu Fen Xi 29:822–833

Rui Y, Shen J, Zhang F, et al (2008) Application of ICP-MS to detecting ten kinds of heavy metals in KCl fertilizer. Guang Pu Xue Yu Guang Pu Fen Xi 28:2428–2433


Article Metrics

Abstract views : 418 | views : 216

Copyright (c) 2022 Indonesian Journal of Chemistry

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.


Indonesian Journal of Chemistry (ISSN 1411-9420 / 2460-1578) - Chemistry Department, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Indonesia.

Analytics View The Statistics of Indones. J. Chem.