Cereals are still by far the world's most important source of food, both for direct human consumption and indirectly, as inputs to livestock production. FAO's latest forecast for world cereal production in 2011 stands at nearly 2313 million tonnes. Total EU-27 grain production forecast was 283 and 272 million tonnes for 2011 and 2012, respectively. Cereal contamination has an important impact on human and animal health. The European Union has established the most comprehensive regulations for food and cereal safety to facilitate world trade and protect consumer health. This paper reviews the existing legislation associated with cereal safety, with a focus on mycotoxin contamination. Regulations and Directives were classified into the following topics: general food legislative framework, official controls (sampling and analysis), maximum levels for contaminants, prevention and reduction. To give the reader a rapid first approach to the topic of his interest, a synoptical presentation of all laws related to the above-mentioned topics is given, and the main points of each law, cited in conjunction with its effect on previous laws (repeal, modification, amendments, replacement, related acts), are reported in tables. Moreover, data regarding the worldwide occurrence of mycotoxins in cereals were reported. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.
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