Development of a model to assess the occurrence of mycotoxins in wheat, maize and nuts A holistic approach

S. Dekkers, H.J. van der Fels-Klerx, S.M.F. Jeurissen, M.C. Kandhai, C.J.H. Booij, P.M.J. Bos

Research output: Book/ReportReportProfessional

Abstract

The most important factors for the prediction of the occurrence of mycotoxins in food include weather conditions (such as temperature and atmospheric humidity), agricultural factors (such as crop rotation and soil cultivation) and factors within the food chain (such as crop drying and storage conditions). Mycotoxins are toxic chemical compounds produced by fungi that can occur in various foodstuffs. The National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) and Wageningen University and Research Centre (Wageningen UR) have developed a blueprint of a model to assess the risk of occurrence of re-emerging mycotoxins in wheat, maize and nuts. In order to protect consumers against mycotoxins, it is essential to detect any possible contamination with fungi at the earliest possible stage. Governmental organizations and the commercial sector can use the proposed model as an early detection tool. During the development of the model, an investigation was necessary to determine which factors, both inside and outside the food chain, could be used as indicators for the presence of mycotoxins. This investigation included interviews and a workshop with experts from various fields related to this subject. These insights have led to the development of a conceptual 'traffic light' model that indicates the risk of occurrence of mycotoxins with color signals; red indicates high risk, yellow medium risk, and green low risk. The prediction capacity of the conceptual model will be further investigated in a follow-up study
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationBilthoven/Wageningen
PublisherRIVM/RIKILT/PRI
Number of pages87
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Publication series

NamePRI report
PublisherRIVM/RIKILT/PRI
No.186

Keywords

  • cereals
  • food safety
  • mycotoxins
  • toxins
  • fungi
  • maize
  • nuts
  • nutrition and health

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