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Are aflatoxins contaminating the milk you’re drinking in Kenya? New research to find out

Kenyan boy drinking milk

‘The International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) has commissioned research to ascertain the levels of aflatoxins in the milk consumed in Kenya.

Studies say every Kenyan consumes over 145 litres annually – higher than other Africans – increasing the risk of milk-related aflatoxins.

‘“Because of the higher milk consumption, especially by young children, pregnant and nursing women, Kenyans are likely to be more at risk from aflatoxin-contaminated milk than other Africans,” says Johanna Lindahl, a food safety researcher at ILRI.

‘This research will determine the risks by exposure to aflatoxin-contaminated milk. The project is funded by the Government of Finland.

‘Aflatoxin poisoning is produced by fungi Aspergillus that infests grain such as maize and sorghum that are badly stored under higher moisture content. Consequently, the resultant contaminated feed lead to poisons getting to milk.


‘Presence of these toxins in food that can harm human health and be lethal in high doses.

Kenya, in East Africa, is one of the world’s hotspots for aflatoxin-related deaths . . . .

Read the whole article by Mwangi Mumero in The People (Kenya): Kenyans could be drinking poisoned milk, 20 Feb 2014.

Read other articles about aflatoxin research on the ILRI News Blog:

‘Biocontrol’=effective control of aflatoxins poisoning Kenya’s staple food crops, 13 Feb 2014

Dairy feed project to reduce aflatoxin contamination in Kenya’s milk, 11 Feb 2014

Australian-funded research fights aflatoxin contamination in East African foods, 6 Feb 2014

Reducing aflatoxins in Kenya’s food chains: Filmed highlights from an ILRI media briefing, 19 Dec 2013

Fighting aflatoxins: CGIAR scientists Delia Grace and John McDermott describe the disease threats and options for better control, 8 Nov 2013

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