NCGA Task Force Works to Aid Growers with Mycotoxin

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Source: National Corn Growers Association

Last week, NCGA's Mycotoxin Task Force met with researchers that comprise the Aflatoxin Mitigation Center of Excellence. This joint effort between corn growers and university researchers seeks to prevent economic loss and other factors associated with aflatoxin, a toxic compound produced by naturally occurring fungi in some nuts, oil seeds and grains like corn. The group is looking at all aspects of research, including genetic, chemical, storage, field application, sanitation and feed solutions.

"Originally, the center was looking to public resources to bring aflatoxin mitigation solutions to the field," said NCGA Mycotoxin Task Force Chairman Don Glenn. "However, due to budget cuts at federal and state levels, the Steering Committee will seek internal funding from participating organizations, related industry partners and grants. We spent considerable time reviewing current and possible research projects and found several positive research avenues."

Current projects funded by the Mycotoxin Task Force include clay improvement in the DDG feed ration of livestock by Texas A&M University and jointly funded genetic research with NCGA's Research and Business Development Action Team conducted by the Danforth Center on aflatoxin free corn. The group also heard a promising presentation on high-level disinfection technologies.

Drought, heat, high humidity and insect infestation are ripe conditions for the aflatoxin-producing fungi that pose a health threat to humans and animals. Although most prevalent in the southern corn growing states, under certain environmental conditions, aflatoxin contamination can have a significant impact on the total U.S. corn crop.

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Charles W. Bacon    
Russell Research Center, Athens, Georgia  |  July, 26, 2011 at 07:46 AM

I look forward with great interest this formation and resulting interest on the aflatoxin problem in corn. however, I feel it overlooks another problem and that is the fumonisin problem which is usually concurrent with the aflatoxin problem. Is is an emerging but universal and serious problem in corn. In the Toxicology and Mycotoxin Research Unit, Athens, GA, an ARS facility, we are working on the fumonisin problem. We in ARS are in the process of developing Customer Liaison Committees with the responsibility of assisting us in our research as it relates to industry needs. We here in Toxicology and Mycotoxin Research Unit would like to know if there is anyone on the committees within this Fast Force that can also assist us. To be clear, do you have any individual that is willing to serve on our Customer Liaison Committee relative to advise and verbal support for our work with the fumonisin in corn? This would entail one annual meeting which I hope can be done with the audio-communication systems we are developing in the Center. This as I understand it, is interactive with your computer so no need to have a similar system although most offices do. Therefore, there will be need to us to budget travel to this site.

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