Stringent Food & Feed Safety Regulations are Driving the Market for Mycotoxin Testing

Stringent Food & Feed Safety Regulations are Driving the Market for Mycotoxin Testing

The global mycotoxin testing market is estimated to be valued at USD 858 million in 2018 and is projected to reach USD 1,157 million by 2023, at a CAGR of 6.1%.

The global mycotoxin testing market is estimated to be valued at USD 858 million in 2018 and is projected to reach USD 1,157 million by 2023, at a CAGR of 6.1%. Increase in instances of foodborne illnesses due to mycotoxin contamination, growth in demand for compliance with international trade mandates, and change in atmospheric conditions are some factors that are driving the market. The key players profiled in the mycotoxin testing market include SGS (Switzerland), Bureau Veritas (France), Eurofins (Luxembourg), Intertek (UK), Mérieux NutriSciences (US), ALS Limited (Australia), Neogen (US), Romer Labs (US), Symbio Laboratories (Australia), OMIC USA (US), AsureQuality (New Zealand), and Microbac (US).

The key market players adopted various growth strategies such as new services, technologies, and product launches; expansions & investments; acquisitions; and agreements, collaborations, mergers, and partnerships to cater to the increasing demand for mycotoxin testing. The companies have been expanding their operations in various regions across the globe to establish themselves as leading players in the mycotoxin testing market.

SGS (Switzerland) is one of the largest players in the mycotoxin testing market. SGS provides for inspection, verification, testing, and certification requirements of its clients. The company operates through a network of more than 2,400 offices and laboratories across Europe, the Middle East, the Americas, Africa, and the Asia Pacific. In October 2018, SGS announced the expansion of its agricultural testing service in the Chinese market. The services offered include sample testing of soil, irrigation water, and plant tissues, along with fertilizer recommendation service for national and international consumers. The expansion aimed to help the company to better its footprint in the agriculture testing sector.

Eurofins (Luxembourg) is an international group of laboratories that provide testing and support services to the pharmaceutical, food, environmental, agricultural, and consumer products industries, as well as to governments. The company capitalizes on a portfolio of 150,000 reliable analytical methods that enable it to offer services that characterize the safety, identity, purity, composition, authenticity, and origin of products & biological substances. In October 2018, Eurofins acquired Environex Group Inc. (Canada), a provider of testing services to the environment, agriculture, food, and health & pharmaceutical sectors, with three laboratories to expand its presence in the Canadian market.

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Expansion opportunities in emerging markets

Increasing food trade across the borders of emerging markets increases the opportunity for the growth of this market. The increasing incidences of food-borne illnesses and improper sanitation & processing conditions in the factories in a few countries such as Indonesia strongly require the need for mycotoxin testing of food. China has been a potential food-importing & -exporting country; it is hence a key market. The inception of regulations in emerging economies that have entered the food trade, authorization of authorities to prohibit the import & supply of contaminated food and enforce food recalls, and nutrition labeling of foods are expected to increase the demand for testing services in these regions.

Moreover, growing cases of mycotoxicosis outbreaks from the emerging economies of Asia and Africa are projected to create high growth opportunities for the testing market in these regions. The developing countries are chronically exposed to the high levels of aflatoxins, fumonisins, and trichothecenes, which cause carcinogenicity, immunotoxicity, and growth retardation in animals.

Several studies in Nigeria have reported toxin levels far above the limits allowed by international regulatory agencies in food and agricultural products. In addition, fatal outbreaks of toxicities, resulting particularly from aflatoxins, have been widely reported in Nigeria. There is an urgent need to address the food safety and international trade issues associated with mycotoxin contamination in Nigerian consumer goods and agricultural products because there is a huge problem of mycotoxin contamination in developing countries such as Nigeria, where there exists a dearth of organized scientific information and data on the magnitude of the problem.

What challenges arise due to Inappropriate sample collection & standardization?

The food testing process has multiple stages, namely, raw material growing, procurement, processing, packaging, storage, and the supply chain. The exact number of samples required to be collected during testing is not yet standardized. Food and feed manufacturing or growing companies also face challenges in determining the appropriate sample size as this sample represents all the possible products in the food manufacturing value chain in sufficient quantity. Larger sample size would increase the chances of positive results. The testing laboratories do not receive a sufficient number of samples each time from their clients. This can be attributed to their customers’ lack of awareness about the quantity required for mycotoxin testing.

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Standards regarding sample requirements are not published in a reliable reference form. Lack of information, in terms of sample standards, can cause several losses to testing labs. This lack of standardization in collecting samples has been affecting the end results; some testing labs have even lost their accreditation due to inappropriate results. Such issues have been restraining the growth of the testing market to some extent.

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