The research was initiated to enhance the authors understanding of the availability to animals of Cd present in edible plants. Such information is of considerable importance since agricultural cross can accumulate high concentrations of the metal when grown in certain soils or with sewage sludge as a fertilizer. Edible plants were labeled with 109Cd by growing them on 109CdCl2 treated soil. The availability of 109Cd to male and female rats was then determined by feeding semisynthetic diets containing either freeze-dried radioactive spinach, lettuce, soybean, carrots, tomatoes, or wheat flour, or comparable nonradioactive plant powders spiked with 109CdCl2. Retention of 109CD by liver and kidney was determined after a 14 day feeding period. With the exception of spinach, Cd accumulation by rats was not found to be significantly influenced by the form of Cd in the diet whether supplied as plant-bound 109Cd or added to nonradioactive diets as 109CdCl2. The mean retention of Cd in liver and kidney was 0.17% of the dose consumed for males and 0.26% for females consuming diets containing wheat, soybean, carrots, lettuce, or tomatoes.