Pheasant meat on sale in butchers shops is found to contain toxic lead

Pheasant meat on sale in a UK butchers has been found to contain toxic lead that is harmful to humans.

These fragments, which are too small to detect by eye or touch, become lodged deep within the meat when wild gamebirds are killed with lead shotgun pellets. 

It means that eating lead shot pheasant is likely to expose consumers to raised levels of lead in their diet, researchers say, even if the meat is carefully prepared to remove the shotgun pellets and the most damaged tissue.

They found that the fragments of lead were too distant from the shot to be removed without throwing away a large proportion of otherwise useable meat.

Lead is toxic to humans when absorbed by the body and there is no known safe level of exposure. 

It accumulates in the body over time and can cause long-term harm, including increased risk of cardiovascular disease and kidney damage in adults.

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