Trace and minor elements in Brazilian honey were analyzed by total reflection X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy. Up to 12 elements (K, Ca, Ti, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, Se, Br, and Sr) were detected in 160 samples of honey from 4 regions of Rio de Janeiro State (Barra Mansa, Teresópolis, northern and southern Nova Friburgo). The results showed the samples from Teresópolis had higher rates of essential and nonessential elements than samples from the other regions, except for Ni. K and Ca were the most abundant elements in all samples, in the range of 116.5 to 987.0 μg g−1. Ni, Cu, Zn, Se, and Sr were identified in small concentrations (0.01 to 12.08 μg g−1) in all samples, indicating a low level of contamination in all the regions.
This research might aid in the discrimination of trace elements in honey from different regions in Rio de Janeiro State (Brazil), by using simple multivariate analyses. The dependency of the trace elemental content of honeys on their geographical origin can be used for their local characterization from different regions of the state.