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Co-occurrence of mycotoxins in maize food and maize-based feed from small-scale farms in Brazil: a pilot study

Franco, Larissa T., Petta, Tânia, Rottinghaus, George E., Bordin, Keliani, Gomes, Gilmar A., Oliveira, Carlos A. F.
Mycotoxin research 2019 v.35 no.1 pp. 65-73
aflatoxins, broiler chickens, corn, corn flour, corn meal, dairy cows, deoxynivalenol, feed contamination, feeds, fumonisins, households, humans, laying hens, ochratoxin A, small farms, surveys, tandem mass spectrometry, ultra-performance liquid chromatography, zearalenone, Brazil
A limited survey was conducted to assess the co-occurrence of aflatoxins (AF) B₁, B₂, G₁, and G₂; fumonisins (FB) B₁ and B₂; ochratoxin A (OTA); zearalenone (ZEN); and deoxynivalenol (DON) in maize food (N = 26) and animal feed (N = 45) collected from 21 small-scale farms from the states of São Paulo (SP) and Santa Catarina (SC), Brazil. Samples evaluated were maize meal and maize flour for human consumption available in the farm households, and maize-based feed intended for broiler chicks, laying hens, and dairy cows. Analyses of mycotoxins were performed by ultra-performance liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry. The median levels of mycotoxins found in maize food were 2.5 μg/kg (total AF), 120 μg/kg (total FB), 13 μg/kg (ZEN), and 57 μg/kg (DON). All values were below the Brazilian tolerance limits, except for total FB in one sample of maize flour. In feed samples, median levels of total AF, total FB, ZEN, and DON were 100 μg/kg, 680 μg/kg, 160 μg/kg, and 200 μg/kg, respectively. The co-occurrence of two or more mycotoxins was confirmed in 35% and 51% of maize food and feed, respectively. Results indicate a low human exposure to mycotoxins in the small-scale farms evaluated and a higher exposure of farm animals to mycotoxins in the feed.