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Selko | Health and Fertility

MYCOTOXIN MANAGEMENT

Global Mycotoxin Review to analyse the risk of problems with mycotoxins in dairy cows

Mycotoxins cause problems in dairy cows

During a time of climate change, volatile commodity prices, tight margins and ongoing supply disruptions, mycotoxins can pose an even increasing threat to livestock producers and feed manufacturers. Dr. Swamy Haladi presented the findings of the Trouw Nutrition 2021 Global Risk Analysis. More than 31,000 samples of raw materials, complete feeds for dairy, beef, swine, poultry, companion animals and aqua as well as silages were collected in 2021 and analysed for the presence of Deoxynivalenol (DON), T-2 Toxin (T2), Zearalenone (ZEA), Fumonisins (FUM), Aflatoxins (AF) and Ochratoxins (OTA).

Figure 1: Percentage of samples of maize, wheat, soybean meal and corn silage contaminated with Aflatoxins (AF), Deoxynivalenol (DON), Zearalenone (ZEA), Fumonisins (FUM), T-2 Toxin (T2) and Ochratoxins (OTA).

Contamination of dairy feed and dairy feed ingredients with mycotoxins

Problems with mycotoxins of dairy cows can come from complete feed or silages. Thus, out of the total number of samples, those from ingredients potentially used in ruminant feed (n=16,389), ruminant feed samples (n=1,395) and silages (n=501) are relevant for mycotoxin problems in dairy. The percentage of contaminated samples per raw material type is presented in Figure 1.

Figure 2: Percentage of ruminant feed samples contaminated with Aflatoxins (AF), Deoxynivalenol (DON), Zearalenone (ZEA), Fumonisins (FUM), T-2 Toxin (T2) and Ochratoxins (OTA).

Mycotoxin risk analysis for dairy cows

Percentages of contamination found in ruminant feed are presented in Figure 2. For dairy cows, the risk for problems with Aflatoxins (AF) was considered high, whereas the risk for Deoxynivalenol (DON), Fumonisins (FUM) and Zearalenone (ZEA) was considered medium. Looking ahead at 2022 animal production, mycotoxins seem to pose an increasing threat to dairy cows. More data will give a clearer picture. Next to that, emerging mycotoxins of dairy cows will continue to be the topic of interest.

Questions and answers from the webinar

Question Answer
What do you think about biotransformation, and about the enzymatic degradation of mycotoxins, what our competitors are using now? Enzymes do have a place in mycotoxin mitigation but the enzyme has to be stable during feed processing and capable of degrading mycotoxins in the gut. Also enzymes should not product more toxix metabolites than the parent mycotoxins.
Would you see increasing incidence of emerging mycotoxins or just the analytical methods evolved in the way that we are actually able to see their presence in feed and food? And basically they were always present in feed but we were juts not testing for them in the past? You are right. It is the better analytical method but also new mycotoxins may be emerging due to climate change.
For feedmills, should they always use toxin binders in feed to avoid the risk of mycotoxins or just use when they find the contamination in feed/raw materials (by testing) Use all the time as mycotoxin toxicity is chronic and not acute..
What are the limit levels of DON and ZEA inTMR for dairy cow? 450 and 50ppb respectively for DON and ZEA in TMR
I would like to ask if, year by year, the collection of all of this data gave us the opportunity to detect some specific mycotoxin trends and so we are able to predict what we could see in the early future (2022 prediction, for example) Yes, we can. Generally the previous year harvest will be used for 4 to 6 months of the new year.
Regarding pet food contaminations, pet food is made by feedmills and packed, also they eat in home or cage. why high contami was detected ? raw materials already contaminated ? Yes, raw materials already contaminated in the field while crops are grown. Once mycotoxins are formed, organic acids or heat treatment will not kill them. On top of this, if pet food is not stored properly, then storage mycotoxins will also be produced.
I’ve searched different articles about DON. As far as I know HSCAS are not able to bind DON, but it is also one of the most common toxin in the field. So what would be the solution? The best suggestion is to strengthen the gut health and immune systems which are mainly affected by DON. Some enzymes are also studied for their ability to degrade DON but practical utilization needs to be evaluated.
How much toxins are bind with clay base Bentonite toxin binder and Organic yeast based oxin binders? It depends up on the mycotoxin in question. The binding capacity of bentonite can differ per mycotoxin. This is why it is important to mitigate mycotoxins beyond binding alone. It requires an integrated approach.
what is the trusted fastest easy method to evaluate row material or finish feed in our factory? ELISA quantitative method like Mycomaster.
which limit of detection and permited concentraion ( residue)we need to rely on ( usa or eu refrence as they differ specially for antibiotic residue) Our advise is to use our practical guidance values, instead of regulatory limits, as those tend to be higher than the levels of where mycotoxins may start to impact animal health and performance.
Please kindly let me know why EU has higher level of mycotoxin contamination than Asai. It depends up on the type of mycotoxins. In general aflatoxins are more common in Asia but DON and ZEA are more common in Europe. Also some times we see higher contamination of aflatoxins in Europe because they use more sensitive analytical methods.
Is the higher level of contamination in EU related with silage feeding? Possible for dairy.
A part from Aflatoxin, what do you consider as the most dangerous toxins for ruminants? What signs can we look at on farm as indicators of a feed contamination with this/these toxins? DON, ZEA. Look for feed intake issues, decrease in milk production, increased soamtic cell counts and poor reproduction.
You consider effects of individual mycotoxins. What are the synergies between different mycotoxins and how shall we interpret the sum of toxicity? There are various levels of synergies between mycotoxins. Too many to mention here now. But we should always convert all toxin effects into one toxin effect.
When a customers focus on poultry which 3 mycotoxins should be main focus testing in mycomaster? Afla, Ochra and DON
Can Mycomaster be used to detect Mycotoxin in complete feed? Yes
What is the max number of samples that can be ran through 1 Mycomaster per week? up to 400 if done continuously.
There is a lot of data on livestock species, is there any data on Companion Animal species? Some data, but more will be generated next year.

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You can access all of our documentation about Selko protocols, sustainable dairy farming and latest research insights about Dairy Cow health & fertility.

Global Mycotoxin Review

Presentation by Dr. Swamy Haladi, PhD, Global Programme Manager Mycotoxin Risk Management, with information about the level of contamination of feed and and an outlook for 2022 with regard to problems with mycotoxins in all food producing animals including dairy cows.

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