Aflatoxin: A fungal toxin infecting the food chain
Aflatoxins pose both acute and chronic health risks. Aflatoxins occur more frequently in the tropics and contaminate staple crops like maize and groundnuts. Aflatoxins in contaminated animal feed can end up in milk, meat and eggs. Infants are also at risk as aflatoxins can be passed in breast milk, and in utero via the umbilical cord. Exposure to aflatoxins has been associated with stunting in children, as well as suppression of the immune system.
This infographic depicts the ways that aflatoxins persist throughout the food chain. At each level, research can help understand how to manage risks. This resource may be useful for communicating the health risks that aflatoxins present to both animals and humans.
Source: Unnevehr L and Grace D. 2013. Tackling aflatoxins: An overview of challenges and solutions. IFPRI 2020 Focus Brief 20(1). Washington DC: IFPRI.