This document specifies a method for the chromatographic determination of the iron chelated by each individual ortho(hydroxy)-ortho(hydroxy) isomer of the chelating agents [o,o] EDDHA, [o,o] EDDHMA and by HBED in fertilizers containing one or more of these substances, except for [o,o] EDDHMA and HBED mixes. The method allows the identification and the determination of the total concentration of water soluble iron chelates of these chelating agents. It does not determine the free form of the chelating agents.
This method is applicable to EC fertilizers covered by Regulation (EC) No 2003/2003 . It is applicable to a mass fraction of the metal chelated of at least 0,625 %.
NOTE 1The substances EDDHA (ethylenediamine-N,N’-di[(hydroxyphenyl)acetic acid] and EDDHMA (ethylenediamine-N,N’-di[(hydroxymethylphenyl)acetic acid] exist as several different isomeric forms. Positional isomers for the hydroxyl or methyl groups (in ortho, meta, and para positions) as well as stereo isomers (meso and dl-racemic forms) are known. Both meso and dl-racemic forms of the ortho,ortho-EDDHA and ortho,ortho-EDDHMA are positional isomers for the hydroxyl groups allowed by the Regulation (EC) No 2003/2003. Since para, meta and ortho methyl positional isomers of the EDDHMA present quite similar stability, they could be grouped: in the method here described the para, meta and ortho methyl positional isomers of the [o,o] EDDHMA are considered together. HBED (N,N´-bis(2-hydroxybenzyl)-ethylenediamine-N,N´-diacetic acid) does not present isomeric forms.
NOTE 2At present, analytically pure standards only exist for ortho,ortho-EDDHA, ortho,ortho-EDDHMA and HBED. All other substances being unavailable as a standard, the influence of their eventual presence in the samples (with respect to the sensitivity and the selectivity of this method) has not been studied.
NOTE 3The meso and the dl-racemic forms of [o,o] EDDHA and [o,o] EDDHMA can be determined separately by this method.