Fumonisins have become more prevalent at higher concentrations in raw commodities and finished feeds in recent years, according to the latest annual BIOMIN Mycotoxin Survey data.
"Fumonisins showed the highest percentage increase in global occurrence among the major agriculturally relevant mycotoxins, which include aflatoxins, zearalenone, deoxynivalenol, T-2, fumonisins and ochratoxin A," said Ines Taschl, product manager for mycotoxin risk management at BIOMIN.
In 2017, 69% of samples analysed tested positive for fumonisins, up from 61% the year prior.
Fumonisins, which are produced by Fusarium proliferatum and F. verticilloides, predominantly contaminate corn, corn by-products and soybean. They constitute the second most commonly found mycotoxin, deoxynivalenol, also known as vomitoxin, consistently ranked as the most common mycotoxin globally.
"The shift in the composition of the mycotoxin threat is noticeable when comparing data sets over the years, and the trend towards higher fumonisins levels globally can be observed in every region," Taschl added.
In North America, 46% of samples analysed tested positive for fumonisins at an average concentration of 2187 parts per billion (ppb) in 2016, reaching 52% of samples at an average of 2441 ppb in 2017.
In Asia Pacific, 97% of corn samples tested positive for fumonisins.
In Central Europe, the prevalence of fumonisins has increased steadily since 2015.
In Argentina, the average concentration of fumonisins rose from 1808 ppb in 2016 to 2800 ppb in 2017.
"While fumonisins are typically found in warmer climates, they have been recorded at greater frequency in more moderate zones," she points out.
The maximum value registered for fumonisins was 290,517 ppb, sourced from a finished feed sample in the United States.
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