honey, natural radionuclides, artificial radionuclides

How to Cite

Mihaljev Željko, Jakšić S, Živkov Baloš M, Popov N. RADIOACTIVE RESIDUE IN HONEY . AVM [Internet]. 2021 Dec. 31 [cited 2024 Jul. 18];14(2):49-60. Available from:


The concentration of radioactive isotopes in honey is an important bioindicator of environmental contamination. For that purpose, a total of 66 samples of different types of honey (acacia, meadow, linden, sunflower, flower, forest, oilseed rape, chestnut) were examined. The samples were collected during 2020 and 2021 at different localities in the Republic of Serbia (Vojvodina, Central Serbia, Kosovo). Gamma spectrometric analysis was used to determine natural radionuclides 40K, 232Th, 226Ra, 238U, 235U and 22Na and anthropogenic radionuclide 137Cs. The obtained results indicate that the predominant radionuclide in all the analyzed honey samples is natural K-40, whose average activity was 74 Bq / kg. The activity of other tested radionuclides ranged as follows:  Th-232: <1-2.0; Ra-226: 1.9-15.6; U-238: <1-31.4; U-235: <0.2-1.61 and Na-22: <0.2-2.4 Bq / kg. The activity of the artificial radionuclide Cs-137 was measured in 53% of the tested samples from the territory of Kosovo with the maximum value of 3.63 Bq / kg. Regarding the determined level of radioactive residues, it can be concluded that the honey produced in the Republic of Serbia is healthy and environmentally safe food.

Key words: honey, natural radionuclides, artificial radionuclides
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