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A Southern View

Crop Observations from Southern Illinois
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Another Reason to Contact Your Crop Insurance Agent

Posted by Robert Bellm -

As if this summer's drought hasn't caused enough problems, here's one more that you can add to the list! An ear rot caused by the fungus Aspergillus flavus may be showing up in some fields. Aspergillus prefers to develop under hot temperatures and high humidities. It also has the ability to produce a mycotoxin commonly referred to as aflatoxin. If alflatoxin is present in grain delivered to the elevator, it may be rejected and therefore unsaleable.

While Aspergillus flavus is primarily a field mold, it can continue to grow and produce aflatoxin in storage if the grain is not dried quickly and adequately to safe moisture levels, usually less than 15 percent.

Fortunately, aflatoxin is a covered loss under many crop insurance policies, but only if the field has been inspected prior to harvest. If you suspect that you may have problems in your fields, you should contact your crop insurance agent before harvest begins.

Click here for a Report on Plant Diseases describing several grain mycotoxins, including aflatoxin.

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