Management of Grain Mold and Mycotoxins in Sorghum uri icon


  • In sorghum, grain mold is an important biotic constraint in relation to grain quality and concerns about mycotoxin contamination. Grain molds and subsequent mycotoxin contamination are severe in the newly developed hybrids and varieties that are grown in warm humid environments and mature before the recession of the rains. A wide range of mold fungi including Aspergillus, Alternaria, Cladosporium, Diplodia, Fusarium, Curvularia, Phoma and Penicillium, are associated with the grain mold and mycotoxin production in sorghum. Extensive research work has been done on sorghum grain mold biology and epidemiological aspects; however, very little is known on mycotoxin contamination and its management. This bulletin carries brief descriptions about the important mycotoxins in sorghum, their effects on human and livestock health as well as economic impacts. On-farm trial samples from Andhra Pradesh (AP) and Maharashtra states were analyzed for mycotoxins (aflatoxins and fumonisins) and higher levels of aflatoxins (0-362 ?g/kg) were found in AP samples. The mycotoxin contamination level in Maharashtra was negligible. Fumonisins contamination levels were much lower than the 5,000 ?g/kg permissible limit. Management practices such as planting resistant cultivars, timed planting, harvesting, controlling pest and diseases, harvesting, drying, sorting and storage practices that reduce or remove mycotoxin contamination in sorghum are mentioned briefly. Descriptions/methods of mycotoxin control through a decontamination process and alternative uses of mycotoxin contaminated sorghum grain for breweries and bio-fuel (ethanol) production are also described here

publication date

  • 2008