CFSA helping local CDC in Fungi Identification and Mycotoxin Detection in Left-over Foods Suspected to Food Poisoning

Updated:2015-08-03 Clicks:19879

On March 20th 2015,the Laboratory of Microbiology of China National Center for Food Safety Risk Assessment was requested to detect fungi and mycotoxins in 5 cooked and 5 raw egg tart samples sent by Shunyi CDC. These samples were left-over foods suspected to causefood poisoning in a family, with 3 victims suffering from nausea and vomiting after eating these foods one hour later.

As soon as received the samples, the Laboratory of Microbiology begun to isolate fungi and detect mycotoxins including deoxynivalenol (DON) and zearalenone (ZEN), in both cooked and raw egg tart samples, according to the official methods GB4789.15-2010, GB/T 23503-2009 and GB/T 23504-2009, respectively. Aspergillus candidus were found as the predominant fungi in the raw egg tart samples but not in cooked samples. The total count of A. candidus in the raw egg tart samples was 4.0×103 CFU/g, which is 44 times higher than the mould limit for cream, butter and anhydrous milkfat regulated by Chinese government. The concentration of DON and ZEN were 0.108mg/kg and 0.222mg/kg for cooked tart samples and 22.8μg/kg and 30.3μg/kg for raw egg tart samples, respectively. The concentrations of DON and ZEN in all left-over food samples are below the tolerance limits for both toxins issued by China national food safety standards.

In conclusion, the raw egg tart samples were heavily contaminated by A. candidus. A.candidus are capable of producing mycotoxins such as citrinin and kojic acid etc.So, more attentions have to be paid to this fugus contamination and related mycotoxin production in foods.