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  • Author or Editor: T.E. Sondergaard x
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Production of beef in Denmark and Sweden derives from very varied production systems, from intensive bull production to extensive suckler cow systems based on grazing of semi natural areas. Beef production – in particular extensive suckler cow systems - is regarded as having a high negative impact on the climate compared to meat from pigs and broilers but it may have some advantages in relation to e.g. biodiversity and animal welfare, which are not considered when only the climate impact is in focus. In order to make an overall assessment of the impact of different beef production systems, an indicator-based sustainability index was developed. The aim was to create an index based on data that already exist at the farm or data that was relatively easy to collect. The index should be suitable for benchmarking both between farms and/or production systems but also as documentation or certification to authorities, slaughterhouses or consumers. The index was developed based on scientific literature and practical experience from similar projects, and was tested on two Swedish and three Danish farms. The index includes seven sub-indices including animal welfare, environmental impact, climate impact, use of resources, social responsibility, economy and biodiversity. An on-line platform was developed for handling data collection on farm, calculation and presentation of the index. The test showed that the index was able to assess the sustainability of various beef production systems. However the index needs to be evaluated before it is ready for general use on farms in Denmark and Sweden.

In: The ethics of consumption


The secondary metabolite 3-nitropropionic acid (3-NPA) is produced by certain fungi. The metabolite is a potent toxin which inhibits the citric acid cycle. A medical case from 2021 described a 69-year-old Danish man who ingested 3-nitropropionic acid contaminated coconut water. The man died 26 hours after ingestion. Subsequent analysis identified Apiospora saccharicola as the fungi responsible for synthesising 3-NPA in the coconut. The metabolic pathway for 3-NPA is unknown but is thought to be activated by adverse growth conditions. This study aimed to confirm that Apiospora can produce 3-NPA within coconuts and develop a quick and easy method for detection of 3-NPA in coconut water using 1H NMR. This method can possibly aid in detection of 3-NPA in contaminated groceries, such as coconut water.

In: World Mycotoxin Journal