Infant exposure to polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) via consumption of homemade baby food in Korea

Yunsun Jeong, Sunggyu Lee, Sunmi Kim, Sung Deuk Choi, Jeongim Park, Hai Joong Kim, Jeong Jae Lee, Gyuyeon Choi, Sooran Choi, Sungjoo Kim, Su Young Kim, Young Don Kim, Geumjoon Cho, Eunsook Suh, Sung Koo Kim, So Hee Eun, Soyong Eom, Seunghyo Kim, Gun Ha Kim, Won Chan LeeKyungho Choi, Sungkyoon Kim, Hyo Bang Moon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Limited data are available on the residue levels of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in baby food. In this study, 24 PBDE congeners were determined in 147 homemade baby food samples collected from 97 households for 6-, 9-, 12-, 15-, and from 24 to 27-month-old infant groups during the period of 2012-2013. The concentrations of total PBDEs (σPBDE) ranged from 24.5 to 6000 (mean: 263). pg/g fresh weight, higher than those found in commercial formulae from the United States. The predominant congeners were BDEs 209 and 47, accounting for 92% of the σPBDE concentrations, reflected by high deca-BDE consumption in Korea. The residue levels and detection rates of BDE 47 in the baby food samples showed a gradual increasing trend with an increase in infant ages, due to changes in the food ingredients from hypoallergenic to greasy. The daily intakes of BDEs 47 and 209 via baby food consumption ranged from 0.04 to 0.58, 0.80 to 20.3, and 1.06 to 22.3. ng/kg body weight/day for 6-, 9-, 12-, 15-, and 24-27-month-old infant groups, respectively; these intakes were lower than the oral reference doses proposed by the US EPA. Together with three exposure sources, baby food, breast milk and dust ingestion for 6-month-old infants, the daily intake of σPBDE was 25.5. ng/kg body weight/day, which was similar to the intake via baby food consumption only for over 24-month-old infants in our study. This indicates that baby food is an important exposure pathway of PBDEs for over 24-month-old infants. This is the first study regarding the occurrence and exposure assessment of PBDEs via homemade baby food.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)396-401
Number of pages6
JournalEnvironmental Research
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Oct 1
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Elsevier Inc.


  • BDE 209
  • BDE 47
  • Baby food
  • Breast milk
  • Daily intake
  • Infant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • General Environmental Science


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