Overall objectiveThe objective of WP 8 is to perform probabilistic farm-to-fork risk assessments of emerging mycotoxins (e.g. alternariol, ochratoxin A and patulin) in fresh produce. Evaluation and ranking of control measures to minimize food safety risks related to mycotoxins, taking into account changing climate and growing import of these foods from third countries is also one of the objectives of this work package.
Strategy:Veg-i-Trade focuses upon emerging mycotoxins (e.g. alternariol, ochratoxine A, patulin) in fresh produce and derived products (e.g. tomatoes, bell peppers, soft red fruits and apples). The first task of this work package implies collection of data concerning mycotoxin concentrations on dried plants and on fresh produce and derived products. Both European countries (e.g. Belgium, Spain, the Netherlands) and ICPC partners (e.g. Egypt, Brazil, India) will be involved. An inventory of relevant moulds and mycotoxins related to fresh produce and derived food products will be set up by chemical screening (using chromatography and mass spectroscopy).
The growth behaviour of moulds and the production of mycotoxin will be studied as a function of some important parameters (e.g. time, temperature, package atmosphere). Different scenarios (globalisation and climate change) will be applied to estimate the effect on the mould growth and mycotoxin production. Subsequently, probabilistic farm-to-fork risk assessment models will be developed enabling the prediction of mycotoxin concentrations in a selection of fresh produce and derived products and, related to this, to estimate the risk of dietary exposure to these mycotoxins.
These studies will be the basis for the evaluation of possible interventions in the (global) farm-to-fork chain to mitigate this risk in view of a changing climate and growing intra-community (within EU between Member States) and global trade of these foods.