Contaminants in food and feed

Food and feed may contain contaminants. Furthermore, contaminants from feed may be carried over to food of animal origin. For the risk assessment of contaminants in food and feed, analytical methods must be developed and validated so that an exposure assessment can be undertaken on the basis of valid data. BfR is involved in obtaining the necessary data.

Research areas

  • Carry over of acrylamide from feed to chicken eggs
    Some types of feed are heated during processing which can lead to the formation of acrylamide or contain food products contaminated with acrylamide. This means that studies regarding potential hazards to consumers are necessary.

  • The carry over of pyrrolizidine alkaloids from feed to milk in goats
    Pyrrolizidine alkaloids are secondary plant substances which are formed to defend plants against predators. In the liver they are converted into metabolites which react irreversibly with DNA and other macromolecules and may, therefore, be toxic.

  • Carry over of coccidiostatics to chicken eggs following cross-contamination during feed preparation
    Coccidiostatics are used in animal husbandry as feed additives in order to control infestation with coccids (single-cell parasites). The feed of laying hens may not contain these substances. The detected residues in chicken eggs indicate that cross-contamination during feed production may be the cause.


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