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5. EWS Mycotoxins maize harvest 2016

For many years, three OVOCOM members (Apfaca, ARMB and Synagra) together are working together towards a targeted monitoring with respect to the presence of mycotoxins in maize. Such monitoring carried out as quickly as possible after harvest (early warning), allows us to estimate the degree of contamination of mycotoxins in maize.


The final report was published on 29/12/2016. With a total of 71 analysis, the sector is able to have a precise idea as to the mycotoxines levels found in the new maize harvest, primarily of Belgian or French origin.


As the weather conditions were relatively unfavorable during the sowing and growth of maize, the maize production was therefore reduced by half.


Furthermore, thanks to the favorable weather conditions of last summer, during flowering and ripening of the maize, contamination by Fusarium and mycotoxin has been minimal. Indeed, the analysis results reveal DON (deoxynivalenol) and ZEA (zearalenone) contaminations, clearly inferior compared to 2015.


The results of the final report are presented here below:




  • 83% of the results present a value below the detection limit of 300ppb ;
  • Only 4% of the results exceeded the value of 1.000 ppb for DON in maize, intended for feed (compared to last year : 25%);


Zearalenone (ZEA)


  • All results are inferior to 250 ppb, whereas last year, 95% of the analysis presented a value below 350 ppb;
  • The maximum detected value demonstrates a reduction by half in comparison to the previous year.


Aflatoxine B1, T-2 and HT-2


  • All values are below the detection limit ;


Fumonisines B1 et Fumonisines B2


  • Only one analysis of French maize shows that the detection limit has been exceeded with a value of 3569 ppb, which is way below the target value.


The following conclusion can be made:As opposed to straw cereals, we can conclude that there has been little contamination by the different mycotoxines for the 2016 maize harvest, and at a level lower in comparison with last year. Therefore, there has been no exceeding of the indicative values (…) been noted, with generally lower values (without high peaks) than last year. In short we can say that the contamination level is low, however one must remain vigilant at all times.


Finally the report also underlines the danger of OTA (storage mycotoxines). It is recommended to apply the good storage practices and to ensure proper cooling and a good ventilation after drying.


We would like to thank the organizations Apfaca, KVBM and Synagra for having implement this project . For more information, these 3 organizations shall remain at your disposal at all times.


Source : Apfaca/ARMB/Synagra

13 Jan 2017


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