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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 9 No. 3, p. 344-349
    Received: Oct 9, 1979

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Potential for Aflatoxin Contamination in Peanuts (Arachis hypogaea L.) Before and Soon After Harvest—A Review1

  1. A. C. Mixon2



Certain environmental conditions, microbial and biological activities, and genotypes of the peanut interact to influence the vulnerability of the peanut fruit to invasion by Aspergillus flavus Link ex Fr. and to the elaboration of alfatoxin during pod development and in the harvesting and drying period. Management procedures during this time may influence the degree of fungal invasion and alfatoxin contamination. Such procedures include: rotating peanuts with other crops that reduce the soil population of A. flavus; using cultural practices that remove plant residues from around peanut plants; preventing drought stress and biological and harvest mechanical damage; harvesting at optimum pod maturity; and continuous safe and rapid drying of peanuts after digging. The potential for using genotypes identified to be resistant to seed colonization by Aspergillus species for breeding agronomically suitable cultivars with resistance to the aflatoxin-producing fungus was explored. Factors found to be associated with resistance to fungal colonization of the peanut seed testa are cell structure, cell arranement, permeability, waxy surface, tannin content, and amino acid components. Field application of fungicides have not proven effective in controlling contamination by the fungus.

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