Aflatoxin M1 Occurrence in Local Dairy Products in Shiraz, Southern Iran

Document Type : Original Article


Nutrition Research Center, Department of Food Hygiene and Quality Control, School of Nutrition and Food Sciences, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran


Background: One of the major problems that threaten milk and other dairy products is aflatoxins contamination. Aflatoxin M1 (AFM1) is the hydroxylated metabolite of aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) which is produced in liver of animals and is further excreted to the milk. Due to the negligible effect of pasteurization, sterilization, and milk processing on aflatoxin, it is eventually transmitted to other dairy products. This study was conducted to evaluate the AFM1occurrence in local dairy products in Shiraz, southern Iran.
Methods:In this experimental study, from summer 2016 to winter 2016, 76 samples of four dairy products [raw milk (22), cheese (22), ice cream (22), and yogurt samples (10)] were collected from the retailors, and assessed by ELISA method.
Results: AFM1 was identified in 92.1% of all samples as the mean contamination was 48.135 ppt. In 23.65% of all samples, AFM1 exceeded the EU limit (50 ppt for milk and dairy products, and 250 ppt for cheese). In 5.26% of all samples, AFM1 was visible more among Iranian national standard limit (100 ppt), and in 1.31% of all samples, AFM1 was more than the US/FDA limit (500ppt).
Conclusion: Due to the adverse effects of aflatoxins, even in low amounts, these toxins make serious health problems for humans. Therefore, continuous control of AFB1 contamination in animal feeding and AFM1 in milk used in the preparation of dairy products is crucial.