Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 4

Food contamination Related Abstracts

4 Occurrence of Foreign Matter in Food: Applied Identification Method - Association of Official Agricultural Chemists (AOAC) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

Authors: E. C. Mattos, V. S. M. G. Daros, R. Dal Col, A. L. Nascimento


The aim of this study is to present the results of a retrospective survey on the foreign matter found in foods analyzed at the Adolfo Lutz Institute, from July 2001 to July 2015. All the analyses were conducted according to the official methods described on Association of Official Agricultural Chemists (AOAC) for the micro analytical procedures and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the macro analytical procedures. The results showed flours, cereals and derivatives such as baking and pasta products were the types of food where foreign matters were found more frequently followed by condiments and teas. Fragments of stored grains insects, its larvae, nets, excrement, dead mites and rodent excrement were the most foreign matter found in food. Besides, foreign matters that can cause a physical risk to the consumer’s health such as metal, stones, glass, wood were found but rarely. Miscellaneous (shell, sand, dirt and seeds) were also reported. There are a lot of extraneous materials that are considered unavoidable since are something inherent to the product itself, such as insect fragments in grains. In contrast, there are avoidable extraneous materials that are less tolerated because it is preventable with the Good Manufacturing Practice. The conclusion of this work is that although most extraneous materials found in food are considered unavoidable it is necessary to keep the Good Manufacturing Practice throughout the food processing as well as maintaining a constant surveillance of the production process in order to avoid accidents that may lead to occurrence of these extraneous materials in food.

Keywords: Surveillance, Food contamination, extraneous materials, foreign matter

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3 Comparison of Food Products Contaminated by DDTs in South Africa and Mozambique

Authors: Lesa A. Thompson, Yoshinori Ikenaka, Victor Wepener, Mayumi Ishizuka


One method for controlling malaria in endemic regions is the killing of vector mosquitoes using pesticides such as DDT in indoor residual spraying (IRS). This study was carried out to investigate the presence of and human health risk due to DDT and its metabolites (collectively, DDTs) contaminating human food sources in areas where DDT is used for IRS. Free-range chicken products (meat and eggs) were collected from homesteads in KwaZulu-Natal Province in the northeast of South Africa, and fish meat samples from Maputo Bay in neighbouring Mozambique. Samples were analysed for DDTs (o,p’-DDT, p,p’-DDT, o,p’-DDD, p,p’-DDD, o,p’-DDE and p,p’-DDE) using a gas chromatograph with electron capture detector (GC-ECD). DDTs were detected in all food types, with the predominant congener being p,p’-DDE. The presence of p,p’-DDT confirmed recent release of DDT into the environment. By using concentration levels detected in foods and national consumption levels, the risk to human health through consumption of such food products was calculated. In order of risk level, these were: chicken eggs > chicken meat > fish meat. Human risk (carcinogenic) values greater than one suggest there is an increased health risk through consumption of these foods.

Keywords: Food contamination, Human Health Risk, DDT, South Africa, Mozambique

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2 A Review of Toxic and Non-Toxic Cyanobacteria Species Occurrence in Water Supplies Destined for Maize Meal Production Process: A Case Study of Vhembe District

Authors: M. Mutoti, J. Gumbo, A. Jideani


Cyanobacteria or blue green algae have been part of the human diet for thousands of years. Cyanobacteria can multiply quickly in surface waters and form blooms when favorable conditions prevail, such as high temperature, intense light, high pH, and increased availability of nutrients, especially phosphorous and nitrogen, artificially released by anthropogenic activities. Consumption of edible cyanotoxins such as Spirulina may reduce risks of cataracts and age related macular degeneration. Sulfate polysaccharides exhibit antitumor, anticoagulant, anti-mutagenic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and even antiviral activity against HIV, herpes, and hepatitis. In humans, exposure to cyanotoxins can occur in various ways; however, the oral route is the most important. This is mainly through drinking water, or by eating contaminated foods; it may even involve ingesting water during recreational activities. This paper seeks to present a review on cyanobacteria/cyanotoxin contamination of water and food and implications for human health. In particular, examining the water quality used during maize seed that passes through mill grinding processes. In order to fulfil the objective, this paper starts with the theoretical framework on cyanobacteria contamination of food that will guide review of the present paper. A number of methods for decontaminating cyanotoxins in food is currently available. Therefore, physical, chemical, and biological methods for treating cyanotoxins are reviewed and compared. Furthermore, methods that are utilized for detecting and identifying cyanobacteria present in water and food were also informed in this review. This review has indicated various routes through which humans can be exposed to cyanotoxins. Accumulation of cyanotoxins, mainly microcystins, in food has raised an awareness of the importance of food as microcystins exposure route to human body. Therefore, this review demonstrates the importance of expanding research on cyanobacteria/cyanotoxin contamination of water and food for water treatment and water supply management, with focus on examining water for domestic use. This will help providing information regarding the prevention or minimization of contamination of water and food, and also reduction or removal of contamination through treatment processes and prevention of recontamination in the distribution system.

Keywords: Biofilm, Food contamination, Cyanobacteria, cyanotoxin

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1 Detection of Total Aflatoxin in Flour of Wheat and Maize Samples in Albania Using ELISA

Authors: Aferdita Dinaku, Jonida Canaj


Aflatoxins are potentially toxic metabolites produced by certain kinds of fungi (molds) that are found naturally all over the world; they can contaminate food crops and pose a serious health threat to humans by mutagenic and carcinogenic effects. Several types of aflatoxin (14 or more) occur in nature. In Albanian nutrition, cereals (especially wheat and corn) are common ingredients in some traditional meals. This study aimed to investigate the presence of aflatoxins in the flour of wheat and maize that are consumed in Albania’s markets. The samples were collected randomly in different markets in Albania and detected by the ELISA method, measured in 450 nm. The concentration of total aflatoxins was analyzed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), and they were ranged between 0.05-1.09 ppb. However, the screened mycotoxin levels in the samples were lower than the maximum permissible limits of European Commission No 1881/2006 (4 μg/kg). The linearity of calibration curves was good for total aflatoxins (B1, B2, G1, G2, M1) (R²=0.99) in the concentration range 0.005-4.05 ppb. The samples were analyzed in two replicated measurements and for each sample, the standard deviation (statistical parameter) is calculated. The results showed that the flour samples are safe, but the necessity of performing such tests is necessary.

Keywords: Food contamination, flour, aflatoxins, ELISA technique

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