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Research Articles

Aflatoxigenic Aspergillus flavius and Aflatoxin Formation in Selected Spices during Storage

Authors:

M Rajasinghe ,

Department of Botany, University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya, LK
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K Abeywickrama,

Department of Botany, University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya, LK
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R Jayasekera

Department of Botany, University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya, LK
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Abstract

Proliferation of aflatoxigenic fungi and accumulation of aflatoxins take place during storage of spices at various environmental conditions. The objective of this research was to identify the aflatoxigenic fungal species and their aflatoxin forming potential in selected spices during storage in the laboratory and refrigerator. Dilution series of spice samples namely chilli (Capsicum annum) powder, curry powder, turmeric (Curcurma longa) powder and pepper (Piper nigrum) powder (purchased from two producers) were prepared separately and the frequency of occurrence of aflatoxigenic and other fungi were assessed after plating each on Potato Dextrose Agar and incubating at ambient temperature. Aflatoxin formation of A. flavus was confirmed by growing a pure culture on a SMKY medium and identifying toxins on thin layer chromatographic plates. The presence of aflatoxins in spice samples stored at 30 ± 2°C and 4°C was also confirmed. Long storage of spices leads to aflatoxin production irrespective of storage temperature hence, it is advisable to consume spices such as chilli powerder, tumeric etc. within a relatively short period to avoid build up of aflatoxins.

Key words: Afltoxins; Aspergillus flavus; Spices; Storage

DOI: 10.4038/tare.v12i1.1976

Tropical Agricultural Research & Extension 12(1):2009 1-6

How to Cite: Rajasinghe, M., Abeywickrama, K. & Jayasekera, R., (2010). Aflatoxigenic Aspergillus flavius and Aflatoxin Formation in Selected Spices during Storage. Tropical Agricultural Research and Extension. 12(1), pp.1–6. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/tare.v12i1.1976
Published on 11 Jun 2010.
Peer Reviewed

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