Publication Date


Journal or Book Title

International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health


Wine is a popular beverage and may be a source of nutrient and toxic elements during human consumption. Here, we explored the variation in nutrient and toxic elements from soils to grape berries and commercial white wines (Chardonnay) at five USA vineyards (New York, Vermont, California, Virginia) with strongly contrasting geology, soils, and climates. Samples were analyzed for macronutrients (Ca, K, and Mg), micronutrients (Mn, Cu, and Zn), and toxic elements (As, Cd, and Pb). Our study showed contrasting macronutrient, micronutrient, and toxic element concentrations in soils and in vines, leaves, and grapes. However, plant tissue concentrations did not correspond with total soil concentrations, suggesting a disconnect governing their accumulation. Bioconcentration factors for soil to grape berry transfer suggest the accumulation of Ca, K and Mg in berries while Fe, Mn, Cu, Zn, and Pb were generally not accumulated in our study or in previous studies. Wines from the five vineyards studied had comparable nutrient, micronutrient, and toxic metal concentrations as wines from Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Croatia, Czech Republic, and Japan. The transfer of nutrients and toxic elements from grape berries to wine indicated that only Ca, K, and Mg were added or retained while concentrations of all other micronutrients and toxic elements were somewhat to extensively diminished. Thus, there appears to be a substantial effect on the geochemistry of the wine from the grape from either the fermentation process (i.e., flocculation), or a dilution effect. We conclude that soils, geology, and climate do not appear to generate a unique geochemical terroir as the transfer and concentration of inorganic nutrients appear to be comparable across strongly contrasting vineyards. This has several implications for human health. Nutrients in wine have potential impacts for human nutrition, as wine can meet or exceed the recommended dietary requirements of Ca, K, Mg, and Fe, and toxic metals As and Pb concentrations were also non-trivial.




Special Issue

Heavy Metal Environmental Contaminants in Food




UMass Amherst Open Access Policy

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.