Rye and Corn Withdrawn from EU Market over Mycotoxin Contamination

The need for accurate and sensitive mycotoxin screening has been highlighted yet again by Ochratoxin A contamination notifications from the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) portal. Mycotoxin testing found that the toxin was found in rye flour and corn flour in the months of August and October 2022.


Ochratoxin A is a mycotoxin produced by different Aspergillus and Penicillium species and is one of the most common food-infecting mycotoxins. Ochratoxin A causes a variety of adverse health effects in both humans and animals such as cancer, neurotoxicity, immunosuppression and immunotoxicity.


Analytical testing revealed that 6.5 +/- 1 ppb (sample 1) and 8 +/- 35% ppb (sample 2) of Ochratoxin A was detected in rye flour. The flour was distributed to Belgium, France, Ireland and Romania and the risk was categorised as ‘serious’, it was recalled from the consumer and withdrawn from the market. Corn flour originating from Poland was found to have 5.3 +/- 1.0 ppb (sample 1) and 7.6 +/- 1.4 ppb (sample 2) of Ochratoxin A contamination. The corn flour was distributed to Belgium, Latvia, Lithuania and Romania and the risk was also categorised as serious and withdrawn from recipient(s). The EU maximum residue level is set at 3 ppb for Ochratoxin A in feed and cereals, meaning both products were over the maximum limit by almost double on average.


Randox Food Diagnostics provides mycotoxin testing for the most prevalent toxins with our Myco 9 Array. Screening up to nine different mycotoxins from a single sample, Myco 9 allows the detection of multiple mycotoxins such as: Aflatoxin B1/B2, AflatoxinG1/G2, Paxilline, T2/HT2 Toxin, Ochratoxin A, Fumonisins, Zearalenone, Diacetoxyscirpenol and Deoxynivalenol. Myco 9 is validated in accordance with Commission Decision 2002/657/EC and Commission Regulation (EU) No 519/2014. Validated matrices include cereals, cereal based feed, wheat, rye, oats, barley, sugar beet, soya, corn and rapeseed.


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