Fungi and mycotoxin contamination of agricultural commodities is a major problem in Indonesia as well as in other tropical countries. This is due to the high temperature and humidity, which favor the growth of fungi, followed by producing their toxin. Five of mycotoxins have been a major of concern in Indonesia, i.e., aflatoxin, deoxinivalenol, fumonisin, ohratoxin, and zearalenon. Priority is given to these five toxins since their producer fungi can grow rapidly and produce their toxins in the tropical condition. Among these mycotoxins, aflatoxin is the most concern problem to be discussed in this paper. Aflatoxin is the highest priority mycotoxin problem in Indonesian agricultural commodities, particularly corn and peanut.
Research related to aflatoxins and their controls in food and feed products have been conducted in several research institutes and universities in Indonesia, however, some of these researches were overlapping each-other caused by limitation of communication. Findings from these researches also have not been applied effectively to technical levels (farmer, processor, trader, etc) due to the lack of information. Currently, draft of regulation related to aflatoxin and other mycotoxin contamination in foods is being prepared by Indonesian Standardization Agency. When this standard is approved and implemented, it will give effect to food industries at all level in Indonesia. Therefore, control of aflatoxin at all level of food chain (from farm to table) is needed.
To initiate the collaboration in controlling this problem Aflatoxin Forum Indonesia (AFI) was established in February 2006. This communication forum which is periodically organized is an effective media to create an information network among related parties (government, research institute, university, farmer, industry, processor, trader, and consumer as well). Objectives of this forum are to increase the awareness related to aflatoxins, to set up priority to control aflatoxin problem, to establish integrated program, to organize concrete program and activities, and to support the government in socializing the regulation related to aflatoxins.
Result from this forum, collaboration between Academia (Gadjah Mada University), Business (Industry, Perusda, farmer-groups) and Government (Provincial and district levels) has developed for controlling aflatoxin particularly in two important commodities i.e., corn and peanut. Several performance indicators are targeted such as increasing the productivity, quality, safety (low aflatoxin level) as well as market share for this commodities, increasing awareness of aflatoxin problem and income of farmers.
Presented in : Seminar “Managing Aflatoxin from Farm to Table”
Organized by SEAFAST-Center, BPOM, Kementrian Riset and Teknologi and SELAMAT Project