Very Common and Present in Many Stored Goods
Like aflatoxins, ochratoxins are synthesised by typical storage fungi. The most common ochratoxin is ochratoxin A (OTA). In warmer regions of the world it is synthesised by Aspergillus ochraceus
where the name is derived from. Penicillium verrucosum
is the most important producer of Ochratoxin A in moderate climates. OTA also remains during the processing of food since it is not destroyed by cooking, frying or baking.
Chemically ochratoxins are isocumarin derivatives. They can be detected all over the world in stored foods and feed like maize, oats, barley, wheat, rye, buckwheat, rice, millet, soy beans, peanuts, Brazil nuts and pepper, but even in coffee, beer and wine. These toxins may also be synthesised during spoilage of food.