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Studies for optimization of conditions for reducing Aflatoxin Contamination in Peanuts using Ultraviolet Radiations

The aim of present study was to optimize the radiation dose for maximum reduction of aflatoxin content by varying the distance between the contaminated peanut samples and the UV-C light source and duration of exposure to UV-C light. Studies were also undertaken to evaluate the effect of UV-C exposure on the various quality parameters of peanuts. Two different studies were conducted in a sterilized wooden box fitted with a 15 W UV-C tube in the centre at the top of the box, where the contaminated samples were placed at a distance of 15 cm and 30 cm respectively from the UV-C light source. The duration of the exposure was varied from 2 h to 12 h. The fungicidal activity of UV-C radiation was found to be more pronounced in peanuts exposed at a distance of 15 cm. Maximum reduction of aflatoxin concentration in both the studies was found after 10 h of exposure. In the studies, conducted at a distance of 15 cm, aflatoxin concentration reduced to 99.1 % (350 ppb to 3 ppb) with decrease in fungal count to < 10 cfug-1and at a distance of 30 cm, reduction of 97.4% (350 ppb to 9 ppb) of the aflatoxin content with< 10 cfug-1 of fungal count was observed. However, the quality parameters including nutritional values and physico-chemical parameters of peanuts remained relatively unaffected (within the national and international regulatory limits). The present study thus provides a validated practical method of using UV-C irradiation to reduce aflatoxin contamination in peanuts, intended to be used for the purpose of food and feed.

Author(s): Neelima Garg4, Manjeet Aggarwal2, Saleem Javed3, Rakesh Kumar Khandal1*

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