Aflatoxin Risk Management in Texas: 2013 Harvest Update (NC-213 Newsletter)
Date Posted: November 21, 2013
The Office of the Texas State Chemist initiated an aflatoxin co-regulation effort in 2011 referred to as the One-Sample Strategy.
The Office sought and received approval by the Risk Management Agency to accept “Report of Analysis” performed by OTSC designees for crop insurance settlements between corn growers and their insurers.
These analytical results are also used by OTSC for regulatory purposes and grain handlers for purchasing, storing and selling corn.
In 2013, 29 facilities are participating in the program.
The individuals who perform the One-Sample Strategy program at these facilities are approved by OTSC as official designees.
The designees receive annual training and must demonstrate their capability to test corn for aflatoxin.
OTSC field investigators monitor progress of these designees through weekly audits during the corn harvest.
A comparison between OTSC and designees analytical results are highly correlated (r=0.83) and the average deviation is 24%.
These results demonstrate that most of the corn harvested to date is below 100 ppb aflatoxin.
Reports by county are mapped as they become available and may be viewed on the OTSC website at: http://mycotoxinbmps.tamu.edu/mapsupdate.aspx.
The adoption of the co-regulation strategy by OTSC and the Texas grain and feed industry represents a significant shift in aflatoxin risk management.
This new approach is prevention based and places greater responsibility on the firm to implement practices to protect the safety of the food supply.
The One-Sample Strategy also increases the workload on the OTSC field investigators and management team to perform more training and record inspection.
The OTSC Agricultural Analytical Services validates aflatoxin test kits and creates working standards for program participants.
The primary benefit of a co-regulation strategy is improved risk management.
This leads to greater legal certainty for firms, improved service to customers, improved food safety, and the fewer market disruptions from out-of-compliance product.
Firms participating in the One-Sample Strategy are listed on the OTSC website: http://otscweb.tamu.edu/risk/OneSample/.