Animal feed withdrawn from hundreds of farms after toxin scare

Animal feed is being withdrawn from hundreds of Dutch farms after food safety experts identified cancer-causing aflatoxin in consignments of milk from four dairy farms.

The feed originated in eastern Europe, where shipments from Serbia and Romania have been found to contain the toxin. Animal feed sector organisation Trust Feed says it is recalling all feed made with sweet corn (maize) from eastern Europe as a precaution.

The feed may be the source of the milk contamination the food safety body NVWA is quoted as saying by Nos television.

Milk

The NVWA said on Wednesday it had identified a second consignment of milk contaminated with aflatoxin. The milk came from two dairy farms.

Production at the farms, which were not named, has been halted while experts try to determine the source of the contamination.

Last month, the NVWA said a consignment of contaminated milk had been found on two other dairy farms at the end of last year. Those farms have since been given the green light to resume production.

Source

Aflatoxin is produced by fungus that grows on hay or grains. It shows up in the milk of animals that ingest it.

Earlier this week, it emerged contaminated animal feed from Serbia had been discovered in the Netherlands at five pig farms. Three other farms had also received contaminated feed from Romania. According to farming news website boederij.nl, it has also been found in chicken feed.

The contamination was first discovered in Germany last Friday, where the food safety authority said a possible 6,500 farms are involved.