Factor: Improper storage

Groundnut stored at greater than 10% moisture content is prone to Aspergillus infection.

If the storage bags are placed directly on the ground they will absorb moisture from the ground, which increases the risk of fungal infection and potential aflatoxin. Excessive moisture on the outside of the bags – whether from a leaky roof or ventilation slots – can increase risk.

Insect damage, such as meal moths or grain weevils, also will increase the potential for mold development and aflatoxin accumulation.

If rodents or other pests chew holes in the bags and begin to feed on the groundnuts, moisture can get into the bag, and pests can damage the nuts, both risk factors for infection.