Author(s): Iqbal SZ, Paterson RR, Bhatti IA, Asi MR, Iqbal SZ, Paterson RR, Bhatti IA, Asi MR
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Abstract Chilli peppers from Pakistan are consumed locally and also exported. Their quality is compromised by aflatoxins (AF) contamination. AF in chillies from rural, semi-rural and urban areas of the Punjab region of Pakistan were determined. Twenty-three (52.3\%), 22 (50\%) and 29 (65.9\%) samples from rural, semi-rural and urban areas respectively, contained levels of aflatoxins which exceeded the European Union limits of >5 µg kg(-1) for AFB1 and >10 µg kg(-1) for total AF that apply to spices. Mean values for AFB1 in ground samples were 23.8, 14.8 and 14.0 µg kg(-1) for rural, semi-rural and urban areas, respectively. Mean total AF in ground samples were 27.7, 17.7 and 16.2 µg kg(-1) from equivalent locations. Eleven (50\%), 12 (54.5\%) and 14 (63.6\%) whole samples from rural, semi-rural and urban areas, respectively, contained total levels of AF that exceeded European Union limits. The data indicate that individual localities have particular problems. In conclusion, the concentrations were often greater than the statutory limits set by the European Union.
This article was published in Food Addit Contam Part B Surveill
and referenced in Journal of Drug Metabolism & Toxicology