Vets issue warning on contaminated maize

Maize in a warehouse /FILE
Maize in a warehouse /FILE

The Kenya Veterinary Association has warned the National Cereals and Produce Board against turning contaminated maize in their silos into animal feed.

The vet association said the 750,000 bags of contaminated maize in the country had high levels of aflatoxins which when fed to animals could find its way to humans through livestock products.

The association’s chairman Dr. Samuel Kahariri said that aflatoxin has cancer-causing agents due to its ability to produce altered forms of DNA adducts.

He revealed that NCPB had in the past turned contaminated maize into animal feed; a trend which was unhealthy to both human beings and livestock.


"Following past trends where spoilt maize has been recommended for animal consumption, the vet association wishes to warn NCPB not to turn the current stock into animal consumption either as grain or processed feeds," he said.

He said that animal products such as milk and meat could be contaminated by the toxins and cause adverse public health concerns to consumers.

"Highly valuable companion animals and food animals may come down with aflatoxicosis leading to significant economic losses and deaths of human and animals in some cases," he warned.

The vet chairman called for NCPB to conduct tests on the stored maize and make public the findings.

He also called on the government to invest more in meat products to avoid overreliance of grains as food reserves.

“The management of KCC and KMC should be streamlined to provide strategic food reserves for long life milk and canned meat,” he said.

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