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Soil Health

A video on soil pollution and health.

Soil pollution is an important issue for food, both vegetable and animal origin. It may be caused by chemicals and microbes and/or parasites. Among the chemicals heavy metals, pesticides, phosphate fertilizers and drugs are the main issues. Among the soil-borne microbes there are protozoa, fungi, bacteria, and also viruses that can lead to many diseases such as shigellosis, Q fever, aspergillosis, tularemia, sporotrichosis.

Moreover, beside industrial activities, which may cause heavy metal accumulation, mobilization or immobilization within the ecosystems, agricultural and zootechnical activities may contribute to soil pollution. In fact, the use of sewage sludge as fertilizer may be a cause of pollution on agricultural land. On the other hand, drugs and antibiotics administered to food producing animals for therapeutic purposes, may affect the bacteria population in the soil leading to the spread of antibiotic resistance.

The multidisciplinary skills of public health, veterinary and food safety experts are involved together to ensure food safety during all the production and processing stages from farm to fork.

This article is from the free online

Farm to Fork: Sustainable Food Production in a Changing Environment

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FutureLearn - Learning For Life

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