Aflatoxins are natural substances produced by moulds and fungi which show toxic effects towards humans and animals even in low concentrations.
Over 20 naturally occurring aflatoxins are known, of which the aflatoxins B1, B2, G1, G2 and M1 occur in foodstuffs. Typical food and feed affected are corn, rice, tree nuts, figs and other dried fruits or spices.
Aflatoxin M1, is a metabolite of aflatoxin B1, can occur in milk and milk products when dairy cows are fed on corn containing aflatoxins.
Due to their known genotoxic and carcinogenic characteristics the intake of aflatoxins through food / feed should be minimised.
EU Regulation on Aflatoxins
Regulation (EC) No. 1881/ 2006 sets maximum levels for aflatoxin B1 and/or the sum of aflatoxins (B1, B2, G1 and G2) as well as for aflatoxin M1.
By Directive 2002/32/EC maximum levels have been established for aflatoxin B1 in animal feed.
Because aflatoxins can be distributed widely in individual products or batches, the method of sampling is crucial to achieve a reproducible test result. Therefore, a common sampling procedure is established by Community Regulation (EC) No. 401/2006 for the official control of the levels of mycotoxins in food.
Eurofins has long term experience with a broad range of screening and confirmation methods for aflatoxins and more than 30 mycotoxins in all relevant matrices.
Besides various sampling and homogenisation devices our modern testing equipment includes:
- automatic CLEAN-UP-systems for immuno-affinity columns (ASPEC)
- sample preparation robot
- HPLC-MS/MS systems
- HPLC-fluorescence systems
Eurofins has increased its capacities for aflatoxin testing to be able to guarantee shortest turn-around-times (TAT) for fast reaction times and optimal customer service.
Eurofins provides a comprehensive service for monitoring aflatoxins throughout the food supply chain, from on-site sampling to rush analysis (within 24 hours in some cases).