Forage as a primary source of mycotoxins in animal diets

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2011 Jan;8(1):37-50. doi: 10.3390/ijerph8010037. Epub 2010 Dec 28.


The issue of moulds and, thus, contamination with mycotoxins is very topical, particularly in connexion with forages from grass stands used at the end of the growing season. Deoxynivalenol (DON), zearalenone (ZEA), fumonisins (FUM) and aflatoxins (AFL) are among the most common mycotoxins. The aim of the paper was to determine concentrations of mycotoxins in selected grasses (Lolium perenne, Festulolium pabulare, Festulolium braunii) and their mixtures with Festuca rubra an/or Poa pratensis during the growing season as a marker of grass safety, which was assessed according to content of the aforementioned mycotoxins. During the growing season grass forage was contaminated with mycotoxins, most of all by DON and ZEA. The contents of AFL and FUM were zero or below the limit of quantification. Moreover, the level of the occurrence of mould was quantified as ergosterol content, which was higher at the specific date of cut. All results were statistically processed and significant changes were discussed.

Keywords: aflatoxins; contamination; deoxynivalenol; forage; fumonisins; grass; mycotoxins; zearalenone.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aflatoxins / analysis
  • Animal Feed / analysis*
  • Animal Feed / microbiology
  • Animal Feed / toxicity
  • Czech Republic
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Ergosterol / analysis
  • Festuca / chemistry
  • Festuca / microbiology
  • Food Contamination / analysis*
  • Food Microbiology
  • Fumonisins / analysis
  • Fungi / isolation & purification
  • Lolium / chemistry
  • Lolium / microbiology
  • Mycotoxins / analysis*
  • Poa / chemistry
  • Poa / microbiology
  • Poaceae / chemistry*
  • Poaceae / microbiology
  • Poisons / analysis
  • Seasons
  • Trichothecenes / analysis
  • Zearalenone / analysis


  • Aflatoxins
  • Fumonisins
  • Mycotoxins
  • Poisons
  • Trichothecenes
  • Zearalenone
  • deoxynivalenol
  • Ergosterol