PET Food Processing - March 2022 - 27

FOOD SAFETY
Mitigating
mycotoxins
Experts weigh in
on how to prevent
deadly outbreaks
and costly recalls.
By Lynn Rogers | petfoodprocessing@sosland.com
N
Not very long into the '20s, high-profile outbreaks seem
to be an early and pronounced hallmark of the decade.
In addition to COVID-19, which has reached every corner
of the world and caused illness and death among
humans and animals alike, the pet industry was shaken
last year by pet foods tainted by mycotoxins, naturally
occurring and often poisonous toxins produced by fungi
and mold.
2021 started out with a widespread recall of products
containing high levels of aflatoxin, a mycotoxin known
to grow on corn and other grains used in pet food formulations.
More than 130 pets in the United States died
and at least 220 were sickened after consuming Sportmix
pet food manufactured by Midwestern Pet Food, Inc.
" Aflatoxins are amongst the most poisonous mycotoxins
and a serious threat to both human and animal
health, " said Lars Povlsen, global sales manager of proteins
for TOMRA Food, a Norwegian company specializing
in sensor-based sorting and processing technologies
for food, including pet foods. " Like in the global
food supply chain, mycotoxins exist and are seen as a
hazard in the global pet food supply chain. "
He noted that aflatoxins are produced by certain
molds such as Aspergillus flavus and Aspergillus parasiticus,
and are often found in corn, wheat and other raw
materials used in the production of pet food.
Ultimately, Midwestern Pet Foods recalled more than
1,000 products spanning both cat and dog food offerings.
Later in the year, another brand, Sunshine Mills,
recalled dog foods based on aflatoxin levels found to be
above the allowable limit.
In the United Kingdom, several cat food products
were recalled last year as a precautionary measure after
testing showed high levels of mycotoxins in some samples.
The mycotoxins were not definitively identified as
the cause of a number of pancytopenia cases in cats, but
the recall underscored the seriousness of the presence of
excess mycotoxins in pet food products.
In addition to causing deaths, mycotoxins are a hazard
for pet food products because they can cause other
health issues, from immune deficiencies to cancers.
Long-term liver damage is another condition that can
result from a pet's ingestion of mycotoxins. Although all
pet foods are susceptible to mycotoxins, some products
pose more risks than others.
" In general, wet food tends to be most vulnerable, but
dried food is also hygroscopic and can absorb moisture
to the point it could be at risk for mycotoxin growth, "
reported Rob Di Lorenzo, territory manager and staff
scientist specializing in food and beverage for food testing
solutions company SCIEX, Framingham, Mass.
Points of difference
As 2022 gets underway, the increased awareness of potential
mycotoxin problems in pet foods has spurred pet
food processors and others to take measures to curb potential
new outbreaks and costly recalls.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), for its
www.petfoodprocessing.net | March 2022 | PET FOOD PROCESSING 27
Farmers can follow
recommended crop
production practices
to minimize the level
of mycotoxins in corn,
including drying and
storing corn properly.
┬ęTomasz Klejdysz - stock.adobe.com
http://www.petfoodprocessing.net

PET Food Processing - March 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of PET Food Processing - March 2022

PET Food Processing - March 2022 - Intro
PET Food Processing - March 2022 - 1
PET Food Processing - March 2022 - 2
PET Food Processing - March 2022 - 3
PET Food Processing - March 2022 - 4
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https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/pet-food-processing-march-2022
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/pet-food-processing-december-2021
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/pet-food-processing-october-2021
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/pet-food-processing-september-2021
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/pet-food-processing-june-2021
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/pet-food-processing-march-2021
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2020_12_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2020_10_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2020_09_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2020_06_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2020_03_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2019_12_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2019_10_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2019_09_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2019_06_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2019_03_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2018_12_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2018_09_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2018_06_01
https://digital.petfoodprocessing.net/sosland/pfp/2018_03_01
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