Rushville Republican

Agriculture

September 28, 2012

Farmers on the lookout for aflatoxin as drought continues

RUSHVILLE — WEST LAFAYETTE - The season-long drought and extreme heat have created conditions prime for Aspergillus ear rot to develop in corn, so growers should scout their fields and inspect their grain, a Purdue Extension plant pathologist says.

The fungus, which infects corn ears through the silks or wounds, produces aflatoxin, a toxic carcinogen that also can cause health problems for livestock that consume contaminated corn.

“Aspergillus ear rot is out there, but it varies greatly from field to field, mostly depending on planting time and environmental conditions at pollination,” Kiersten Wise said. “There is no field without some potential for the disease.”

Fields most at risk are those in which corn was planted in late March to early April, due to the high temperatures and drought stress that occurred when that corn was pollinating. Even if corn was planted later in April, it is still at risk if it was under extreme drought stress during pollination, planted in sandy soils or experienced insect and hail damage.

“Producers should scout fields prior to harvest and determine the level of incidence of the disease in the field,” Wise said.

The disease can be identified by its olive green, moldy growth on corn ears.

If growers suspect the disease, they can submit grain samples to Purdue’s Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory, for aflatoxin analysis. This lab routinely screens samples for aflatoxin.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture regulates how much aflatoxin can be in finished livestock feed and corn for human consumption. Regulations vary by species but are especially tight for consumption by humans and dairy cattle, at 20 parts per billion. Regulations for other species are:

100 ppb in corn grain for breeding cattle, swine and mature poultry.

200 ppb in corn grain intended for finishing swine of 100 pounds or greater.

300 ppb in corn grain intended for finishing beef cattle.

Grain elevators are likely to reject loads of corn that exceed government regulations, or they could penalize producers by docking the price.

“At this point in the season, there are no management strategies for reducing ear rots in fields that will remain for grain production,” Wise said. But she and several of her Purdue Extension colleagues teamed up to offer some strategies to help keep the aflatoxin issue from worsening:

Harvest corn as early as possible. Late-season rains can increase mold growth and aflatoxin levels.

Dry grain to less than 15 percent moisture. Make sure to dry grain promptly to keep aflatoxin problems from getting worse.

Remove fine material. Fines often contain higher toxin levels than the grain and can interfere with drying and aeration.

Clean equipment inside and out before and after use. Moldy or insect-infested kernels can contaminate next year’s crop.

A compilation of free Purdue Extension resources for managing moldy corn is available at http://www.purdue.edu/cornmold. Purdue Extension also teamed up with the Indiana Corn Marketing Council to produce the free publication “Managing Aspergillus Ear Rot and Aflatoxin.” The publication, ID-451-W, is available through the Education Store at http://www.extension.purdue.edu/store or by calling 888-EXT-INFO (888-398-4636).

 

1
Text Only
Agriculture
  • ag-rv081514-extension awards pic Women honored with extension awards for dedication to agriculture WEST LAFAYETTE - Purdue Extension honored two women for their dedication and service to agriculture with the Women in Agriculture Achievement and Leadership awards Wednesday evening (Aug. 13) at the Indiana State Fair.The Achievement Award, which rec

    August 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Abundant corn, soybean crops expected again in Indiana, nation WEST LAFAYETTE - The federal government expects Indiana and the nation to grow bumper crops of corn and soybeans for the second consecutive year, adding to already adequate supplies but further holding down prices farmers will get for their productiv

    August 15, 2014

  • Pinney Purdue field day Aug. 20 WEST LAFAYETTE - The 2014 Pinney Purdue Field Day on Aug. 20 will enable participants to stay current on agricultural production issues and visit with fellow producers as well as supply and service exhibitors.Pinney Purdue Agriculture Center is at 1

    August 15, 2014

  • Purdue: Cover crops make stover more profitable WEST LAFAYETTE - Farmers using cover crops as a soil conservation method can remove much more corn stover per acre for biofuels or other uses and at the same time potentially increase their income, Purdue University research shows.The research points

    August 8, 2014

  • ASA responds to Russian ban on U.S. food imports WASHINGTON - In response to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s announcement Wednesday of an impending retaliatory ban on a significant number of agricultural imports to Russia, American Soybean Association President Ray Gaesser highlighted soybean fa

    August 8, 2014

  • Programs to analyze crops report, farm bill WEST LAFAYETTE - Farmers attending two Purdue Extension programs at the Indiana State Fair on Tuesday (Aug. 12) will get a good idea of how corn and soybean crops are shaping up for the fall harvest and how the yields could guide financial decisions

    August 8, 2014

  • Field day to cover five topics for crop producers WEST LAFAYETTE - Purdue University’s Department of Agronomy will co-host a field day with Area Nine Extension agriculture and natural resources educators on Sept. 5.The workshop will run from 7:30 a.m. to noon at the Purdue Agronomy Center for Resear

    August 8, 2014

  • Purdue Extension to offer tomato evening session WEST LAFAYETTE - Purdue Extension and the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture will sponsor a session Aug. 12 for Indiana tomato growers highlighting three varieties of tomatoes grown in high tunnels with different support methods.Th

    August 8, 2014

  • College Station holds 60th Beef Cattle Short Course COLLEGE STATION – More than 1,500 beef cattle producers from across Texas and abroad gathered at Texas A&M University in College Station for the 60th Beef Cattle Short Course this week to learn more about cattle production and maximizing profits duri

    August 8, 2014

  • USDA extends deadline for the emergency assistance WASHINGTON — U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) Administrator Juan M. Garcia announced today that the enrollment deadline for the 2012 and 2013 Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees and Farm-Raised Fish Program (E

    August 8, 2014

Featured Ads
AP Video
US Trying to Verify Video of American's Killing FBI Director Addresses Ferguson Shooting in Utah Raw: Police at Scene of St. Louis Shooting Police: 2 Calif. Boys Planned School Shooting NOLA Police Chief Retires Amid Violent Crimes Lunch Bus Delivers Meals to Kids Out of School Water Bottles Recalled for Safety Researcher Testing On-Field Concussion Scanners Rockets Fired From Gaza, in Breach of Ceasefire Raw: Japanese Military Live Fire Exercise Police, Protesters Clash in Ferguson Independent Autopsy Reveals Michael Brown Wounds Nashville Embraces Motley Crue Obama: 'Time to Listen, Not Just Shout' Lawyer: Gov. Perry Indictment a 'Nasty Attack' Raw: Russian Aid Convoy Crosses Into Ukraine Iowa Man Builds Statue of a Golfer Out of Balls Assange Gets Cryptic About Leaving Embassy in UK Raw: Building Collapse in South Africa, 9 Dead Raw: Pope Francis Meets 'Comfort Women'
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.