09 Oct 2018

Mycotoxin

Legal limits for the presence of certain fusarium mycotoxins in food grade cereals were set in 2006.

Legal limits for the presence of certain fusarium mycotoxins in food grade cereals were set in 2006.  Limits for unprocessed cereals were established at 1,250ppb for the presence of Deoxynivalenol (DON) and 100ppb for Zearalenone (ZON).

Management of mycotoxins at farm level has been assisted by the development of best practice management guidelines and the creation of a risk assessment template.  This work is coordinated through AHDB and more information can be found AHDB cereals and oilseeds.

Originally one of the key issues each year was to determine the level of risk.  AIC and nabim members jointly contributed towards an assessment of mycotoxin levels by compiling rapid test results on both on-farm and delivered samples.  This assessment of the overall risk level, together with the results of on-farm risk assessments recorded on the grain passport, informed a decision on whether wheat deliveries into flour mills continue to require a mycotoxin test result.  

Test results are now however required for year round deliveries irrespective of mycotoxin levels.  Risk assessments retain a use of helping to manage risk on farm and therefore reduce rejection risks at intake.

Mycotoxins remain an item on the EU Commission contaminant risk profile and research continues to both improve detection and reduce incidence through preventative measures in the growing crop. 

Current legal limits on mycotoxins in the EU can be found here.