Mycotoxin contamination of food systems is a major problem in many countries in Eastern and Southern Africa. Most diets in the region are maize based, but cassava, sorghum, millet and peanuts also are important. These food systems are susceptible to aflatoxins, fumonisin Bj, zearalenone and deoxynivalenol contamination. Aflatoxins have been found in foods from Botswana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Maize and maize products from the region also are almost always contaminated by fumonisin Bi. Other mycotoxins, such as zearalenone and deoxynivalenol also have been reported in various food commodities and beer.

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