High mycotoxin levels in Indiana corn

18-12-2006 | |

In terms of mycotoxin levels, this year’s Indiana corn crop is the worst in more than 10 years, according to a survey conducted by Purdue University. A striking observation this year was the number of samples containing Gibberella ear rot.

Every year, Purdue University conducts a survey of the
US, Indiana corn crop just prior to harvest to determine whether ear rots and
the associated mycotoxins are an issue for concern. This year, 316 samples from
70 counties were examined.

DON and fumonisin levels are a
concern


A striking observation this year was the number of samples
containing at least one ear with Gibberella ear rot. This was remarkable because the
disease was seldom seen in the survey over the past 10 years. This year, the
disease ranged from a few rows of kernels to about 25% of the ear. Samples from
six counties were found to contain deoxynivalenol, also known as DON or
vomitoxin, ranging from 0.5 to 8 parts per million (ppm).
These levels
should be of greatest concern to the swine producer. Swine are more sensitive to
DON than ruminant animals and poultry. Signs of DON mycotoxicoses in swine can include feed refusal, vomiting,
diarrhea, and reduced feed consumption.

A second striking observation
this year was the high concentrations of fumonisin. Samples from eight counties
contained fumonisin B1 ranging from 0.7 to 174 ppm. Five of the samples
contained greater than 18 ppm. These levels of fumonisin are well above the
amounts that can cause leucoencephalomalacia in horses and severe effects in swine, such as pulmonary edema.

More
information about ear rot diseases, mycotoxins, and grain storage can be found
on the website from Purdue University.

More information on mycotoxins can
be found in our article archive

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