Topic 1 Minimizing the risks during production

Mycotoxin occurrence cannot be completely avoided, but several measures aiming at minimizing mycotoxin levels and exposure can be implemented at multiple point in the food and feed chains. These include pre-harvest and post-harvest strategies, best practices during crop production, storage and processing, regulatory maximum levels for some mycotoxins, surveillance programs and, finally, dietary procedures. 

The prevention of mycotoxins is a difficult task and can be made at different stages.

Primary prevention should be initiated as preventive measures before fungal infestation and mycotoxins production, by reducing environmental stress in plants and keeping unfavorable conditions for fungal growth, in the field.

In a secondary phase, post-harvest mitigation may be needed. If fungi begins to growth, the elimination and removal of contaminated products should be performed, re-drying the seeds, surface cleaning with brushes or sorting peanuts with laser technology led to effective removal of Aflatoxin contaminated peanuts [18].

Finally, the products should be stored in adequate temperature and humidity conditions.

Mold on strawberries. Picture created and uploaded by Leung Cho Pan. Author: Leung Cho Pan, licenced by Canva.