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Mercury Test

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  • 7-9 business days
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  • Rush Available
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Technical data sheet


Method description

Solid or liquid samples are dried and thermally decomposed in a continuous flow of oxygen and the combustion products are passed over a hot catalyst bed. The remaining decomposition products are carried to a gold amalgamator that selectively traps mercury. After the removal of any remaining gases or decomposition products, the amalgamator is rapidly heated to release the mercury in the vapor form. The vaporous mercury is analyzed using atomic absorption spectrophotometry at 245 nm with quantitation as compared to a calibration curve.

Acceptable matrices

Food products, food ingredients, non-alcoholic beverages, and nutraceuticals

Unacceptable matrices

Some classes of compounds are unsuitable for this combustion method as they may pose a safety risk and/or not completely combust for analysis. These compounds include pure salt (KCI and NaCl), glycerin and glycols, volatile flavoring agents, filter paper, packaging material, and alcoholic beverages.

If you have a question regarding your matrix, please contact us at (800) 245-5615.

Limit of quantitation

Oils: 12.0 ppb

Solids: 4.00 ppb

Liquids: 2.00 ppb


Milestone DMA-80 Direct Mercury Analyzer. Samples are thermally combusted and mercury levels are measured using atomic absorption spectrophotometry.

Method reference

EPA 7473 Mercury in Solids and Solutions by Thermal Decomposition, Amalgamation, and Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry

Reportable unit


Sample size requirements

10 grams

Information required by submitter

An estimate of the mercury level and a clear description of the sample matrix is required.

*Prices and offerings are subject to change without notice.

Common Mercury Test Testing Questions

While our sales and customer service team are happy to answer general testing questions, consultations typically start at a rate of $250 per 30 minutes regarding the interpretation of reported test results or questions about our test methods. We cannot consult on regulations, tolerance limits, or claims.

We make every effort to keep our methods and detection limits up to date according to the latest standards and qualifications. If you have any questions regarding the limit of detection/quantification or method references, please contact our Customer Service team at 1-800-245-5615.

Our standard turnaround time is 10 business days for most assays. There are some assays that require a longer turnaround time. We also offer a RUSH service that is half the time of the standard turnaround time of the assay at double the cost of the assay. A few assays that we provide cannot be rushed due to the nature of the test. Please check the specific assay you are interested in regarding the ability to RUSH the turnaround time.

Medallion Labs, a division of General Mills, offers multiple areas of expertise for analytical testing and product evaluation for the food and ingredient industry. Our areas of expertise include Chemical Analysis, Nutritional Analysis, Food Safety, Shelf Life Studies, Microbiology, Specialty Fibers, Physical Testing, Allergen Testing, as well as Product Evaluation (which includes Product Performance and Sensory Evaluation) and Technical Consulting/Method Development. Our methods are developed for the testing of food products and ingredients.

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Medallion Labs

A food testing program designed with mid-market and enterprise food and ingredient manufacturers in mind.