Ergot Alkaloids

Ergot alkaloids are produced by a group of fungi known as the Claviceps species, the most significant being the C. purpurea. These fungi infect the seed heads of plants during the flowering period and produce a wintering body. The fungus replaces the developing grain or seed with the alkaloid wintering body, known as ergot, ergot body or sclerotium.


The sclerotia are harvested together with the cereals or grass, and if not removed before processing, can lead to contamination of cereal-based food and feed products with ergot alkaloids.


Contaminated feed with toxic levels of ergot alkaloids has been found to affect the reproductive cycles of pigs, poultry and cattle, causing animals to terminate pregnancies. They also have been shown to impact upon digestive systems, resulting in under-performance in weight-gain for meat production.


Available now, Randox Ergot Alkaloid ELISA is the only commercially available kit in line with Commission Regulation (EU) 2021/1399.


Validated according to Commission Regulation (EC) No 519/2014 as a semi-quantitative screening method for cereal-based feed, wheat, rye, oats, barley, spelt and their milling products.


It is successfully assessed by fit-for-purpose approach according to Commission Regulation (EC) No 401/2006 as approved method of analysis. And is successfully assessed by fit-for-purpose approach according to Commission Regulation (EC) No 519/2014 for confirmatory method as an approved method for official control.


Randox Food Diagnostics Ergot ELISA has been evaluated by a third-party, and proven to be able to distinguish between negative and positive samples. Randox’s ELISA displayed no false-negatives and no false-positives. Across all commercially available ELISA tests, Randox Food Diagnostics Ergot Alkaloid ELISA was the only test which showed good performance with all 3 sample types, including 11 matrices and a total of 24 samples.


Product Number: EA3491

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AssayLOD (ppb)Compound
Ergot Alkaloids ELISACereal based feed, wheat, spelt, rye, oats, barley and their milling products - 50ppbErgotamine
*Each LOD standardised to this compound