Argentine: Mycotoxin in Grains of Stored Corn

A. Ricca, M. Balzarini, M. Tablada, D. Rojas, A. Sancho

Abstract


Argentina consolidated the role of the second world exporter of corn. At the same time, the world consumption projects in continuous expansion, this is due to the economic yield and demographic growth in the developing countries. The mycotoxins are compounds produced by the secondary metabolism of toxicogenic fungi. The contamination of the grains and by-products of corn with fungi is a problem that worries the exporters and importers in the whole world for its impact on the human and animal health. In Argentina, there are few studies that estimate the levels of contamination of corn grains with mycotoxins. The aim of this work was to evaluate the results of mycotoxins in stored corn. A sampling based on "The good practices" recommended by ISO 950-1979 was carried out in the frame of project PNCER3353. The samples taken during 2005, 2006 and 2007 (n=102, n=86 and n=105, respectively) were gathered after having entered to the silo from Buenos Aires, La Pampa, Santa Fé, Córdoba and Entre Ríos. The Laboratory of Chemical Contaminants of the ITA - INTA determined the concentration of Fumonisin (FB1, FB2, FB3), Aflatoxin (AB1, AB2, AG1, AG2), Deoxynivalenol (DON), Zearalenone (ZEN) and Ochratoxin A (OTA), which are some of the most powerful carcinogenic agents. The HPLC-MASS methodology was applied for the analysis and the results obtained are in agreement with the legislation in force. The monitoring shows a significant decrease in the analyzed mycotoxin across the studied years. The monitoring of stored corn grains contributed with the identification of the risk of mycotoxin contamination.

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