This proficiency test is targeted at Ochratoxin A analysis, which has an EU MRL for many commodities.
Mycotoxins are toxic secondary metabolites produced by fungi on agricultural commodities in the field or during storage. It is estimated at 25% of the world's food crops are affected, resulting in large commercial losses. Mycotoxins can cause serious health problems (including some being suspected carcinogens) and so are tightly regulated across the world. Mycotoxin contamination is the largest cause of rapid alerts raised against imported food products.
Ochratoxin A is well known to occur within commodities such as cereals including barley. As such there is a real need to provide good storage practices across the global supply chain to mitigate these risks. Your food testing ability can provide a valuable tool to achieve these risk mitigation goals.
Barley flour is used within a large amount of foodstuffs, as well as being sold as an individual product direct to the consumer. As such there is a great demand across the globe which must be satisfied year round. This leads to storage challenges for producers which in turn can promote a high risk of mycotoxin, and more specifically Ochratoxin contamination.
To maintain the effective testing arrangement required for high quality, credible results, effective quality assurance programmes should be utilised. Fapas proficiency tests can form the basis of these quality assurance programmes, from which to quantify your incremental improvements and provide a key measure of return on investment of your quality assurance practices.