Manganese is a gray-white metal, resembling iron. It is a hard metal and is very brittle, fusible with difficulty, but easily oxidized. Manganese metal is ferromagnetic only after special treatment. Certain soils are deficient in it, and so it is added to some fertilisers and given as a food supplement to grazing animals. The average human body contains about 12 milligrams and takes in about 4 milligrams per day from such foods as nuts, bran, wholegrain cereals, tea and parsley.