Aflatoxin is odorless and tasteless. While the mold that makes the toxin can be seen and can affect the crop in ways you can see (such as shriveled nuts of kernels), the actual toxin is invisible. Even small amounts can cause severe health problems in humans and in livestock. Consuming very high levels of aflatoxin during a short period of time can cause acute poisoning (called toxicosis), damaging the liver and kidneys. Liver impairment results in jaundice, which appears as yellowing of the eyes.
Lower exposure over a longer period of time can lead to cancer, most often liver cancer. Aflatoxin is considered a major hepatocarcinogen or cause of liver cancer. Consumption of aflatoxin contaminated food is estimated to cause nearly 25% of global liver cancer cases. In addition, aflatoxin may make health problems due to hepatitis B and HIV-AIDS much worse.