The objective of this research was to investigate the presence of black aspergilli in grapes grown in Italy and to study the effect of environmental and cultural factors able to influence fungal incidence and ochratoxin A (OTA) presence. In this 3-year study, black aspergilli were frequently associated with grape berries; they were present in bunches starting from setting, colonising most berries at early veraison. Aspergillus carbonarius was never dominant at the different growth stages, or in different geographic areas and years, but it was confirmed as the key fungus because of the high percentage of strong OTA producer isolates in the population. The number of OTA producer strains, isolated in each vineyard at the different growth stages, was generally very limited and they were never statistically correlated to OTA content in bunches. The effect of geographic area on fungal flora was confirmed by statistical analysis, even though a major role was played by meteorological conditions, both on fungal colonisation and OTA content in bunches. Discriminant analysis gave promising perspectives for predicting OTA presence in vineyards in the future, based on summation of degree-day and rain in the period between 21st of August and 10th of September.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)S53-S60
Numero di pagine8
RivistaInternational Journal of Food Microbiology
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2006


  • Aspergillus carbonarius
  • Black aspergilli
  • Cropping system
  • Meteorology
  • Ochratoxin A


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