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Risk assessment of Deoxynivalenol in Food. An assessment of exposure and effects in the Netherlands

Risicoschatting van deoxynivalenol in voedsel. Blootstelling en effecten in Nederland

Synopsis

This report describes a risk assessment of deoxynivalenol (DON) in food in the Netherlands. Based on monitoring data of DON in wheat and wheat containing food products (sampling period September 1998 - January 2000) and data on the food consumption pattern in the Netherlands we carried out a probabilistic exposure assessment. Young children showed the highest relative intake. The probabilistic effect assessment indicated that considering the 95th percentile of DON-intake of one-year-olds health effects might occur. At the then occurring exposure levels of DON in children, suppressive effects on body weights (growth retardation) and relative liver weight are estimated at 2.2 and 2.7%. However, large confidence intervals around these estimates exist indicating that the magnitudes of these effects are uncertain. Whether such estimated effect levels are considered (un)acceptable, is a matter of debate and forms part of the risk management process. The probabilistic effect assessment is based on extrapolation of observations in animal experiments to humans. At present, there is no evidence (yet) that the estimated effects will occur in the human population.
 

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