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Monday, 01 February 2016 07:52

Previous ICFM workshops

The  ICFM workshops: 

2016 Freising

2013, 3-5 June Freising: Food Mycology in a Globalized World – Challenges and Solutions to the Safety of Food

2010: 7-9 June Freising:  The 2010 ICFM workshop: Fungi in food and beverages: new research on spoilage, mycotoxins and prevention

 more information:2010 ICFM meeting (Freising)

Monday, 01 February 2016 07:41


1. Definition. The International Commission on Food Mycology (ICFM) is a Commission of the Mycology Division of the International Union of Microbiological Societies (hereafter IUMS Mycology Division).

2. Membership. Membership of the Commission is by invitation of the Commission. Membership shall be limited to experts in food mycology or such other persons who in the opinion of the Commission are able to provide significant information about the field of Food Mycology on a continuing basis. Membership shall be limited to 15 persons, coming from no fewer than six countries. Any member may make a proposal to invite a new member: the decision to issue an invitation shall be decided by a vote of members. The Executive may appoint Consultants to assist with the work of the Commission at any time, for any period.

3. Termination of membership. A member may resign at any time by written communication to the Secretary. Any individual's membership may be terminated at any time by a simple majority vote of members, the purpose of this statute being to exclude continuing membership from those not actively participating in the Commission's work.

4. Executive. The Executive shall consist of a Chairman, a Vice-Chairman, a Secretary and a Treasurer, elected from within the membership. Executive positions shall be held until such time as elections are called for, at the request of any member in writing to the Secretary. Upon such a request, the Secretary shall call for nominations for all Executive positions, and arrange a ballot for such positions, to be held within four calender months of the initial request. Voting may be by postal ballot or at a formal meeting.

5. Responsibilities. The Chairman in association with the Vice-Chairman shall be responsible for the Commission's work program. The Secretary shall be responsible for keeping minutes of formal meetings, for other record keeping, and for informing IUMS Mycology Division of the Commission's activities. The Treasurer shall be responsible for the Commission's finances, and shall submit a balance sheet as required to the Commission.

6. Governance. The Commission shall be bound by the Statutes of IUMS Mycology Division.

7. Aims. The aims of the Commission are (1) to improve and standardise methods for isolation, enumeration and identification of fungi in foods; (2) to promote studies of the mycological ecology of foods and commodities; (3) to interact with regulatory bodies, both national and international, concerning standards for mycological quality in foods and commodities; (4) to support regional initiatives in this area. The Commission further aims to extend understanding of the principles and methodology of food mycology in the scientific community by publishing its findings, and by sponsoring meetings, specialist workshops, courses and sessions dealing with aspects of its work.

8. Finance. The Commission has the right to raise funds and to administer those funds as it sees fit, for its own purposes, as a nonprofit organisation bound by the statutes of IUMS.

9. Publications. The Commission has the right to publish any or all of its deliberations, studies or findings, as it sees fit. Members or consultants may publish work sponsored by the Commission only with Commission approval, by majority vote, and shall suitably acknowledge Commission support. Neither of these statements shall be construed as hindering research or publication on any area of Food Mycology by individual members of the Commission where such research or publication does not impinge on areas specifically under study by the Commission. However, the Chairman or Secretary of the Commission shall be informed by members where such research does impinge on Commission studies.

10. Formal meetings. A formal meeting of the Commission is defined as a meeting over which the Chairman or Vice-Chairman presides or, in their absence, an Acting Chairman is appointed by the Members present, minutes are taken, and voting procedures used. A formal meeting may be held at any time when five or more members are together, provided that all Commission members have been advised in advance in writing of such a meeting.

11. Voting. Voting on any matter related to the Commission may be taken by post, in which case a decision will be made by a simple majority of members who return a vote to the Secretary by a date nominated by the Secretary; or at a formal meeting, as defined in Statute 10, again by a simple majority vote of members present and proxies received from absent members. In these Statutes, voting is governed by the provisions of this statute.

12. Disbanding. The Commission may be disbanded (1) by simple majority vote of members either by post or at a formal meeting; or (2) by a constitutional and valid motion from IUMS Mycology Division to order disbanding. In the event of disbanding, all property of the Commission shall become the property of IUMS Mycology Division.

13. Alteration of Statutes. The Statutes may be emended by a simple majority vote of members, under the voting conditions defined in Statute 11.

Saturday, 30 January 2016 21:48

Registration 2019

Registration is only valid upon receipt of the conference fee. Registration deadline is 1st March 2019 (1st April 2019 without guarantee for accommodation at the venue).

The conference fee includes free participation in all lectures and the poster sessions, abstract book, three nights of accommodation in single room, breakfasts, lunches, dinners, coffee breaks at Pallotti Haus Freising, (conference venue) and conference dinner. Additionally, a limited number of single rooms can be booked directly by participants at “Hotel Bayerischer Hof” in downtown Freising,  15 min. walking distance from the venue for 76,- € per night including breakfast. If you do not like to stay in the Pallotti Haus Freising, please make your booking until 6 April 2019 via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and mention booking code ICFM2019

Reservation of rooms is done by the conference organizers on a first come basis. In the unlikely event that this venue is fully booked, € 282 will be reimbursed from the full price. In that case, participants are asked to make their own booking at one of the local hotels (support upon request).

Extension of accommodation is possible to Friday, 7th June, 2019 for € 58 per person per day, including breakfast or for 94 € full board. Please inquire for room availability!

Accompanying persons may not enter scientific sessions and do not receive conference materials. Their fee of € 350 includes three nights of accommodation at the conference venue, all meals and the conference dinner. A limited number of rooms for double room accommodation are available upon request. Please inquire for room availability and for additional accommodation.

Cancellation policy: Cancellation is free before 13th March 2019. For cancellations made between 14th March and 24th May, 2019 a fee of € 110 (€ 70 for accompanying persons) will be raised. For cancellations made between 25th May, 2019 and 11th June a fee of 220 € (€140 for accompanying persons) will be raised.

The full price of 550 €  must be paid for cancellations made after 11th June, 2019. Payments can only be reimbursed with written cancellation sent in due time before the above mentioned deadlines. A replacement delegate may be sent at no extra charge.

Payment is possible via bank transfer only – we cannot accept credit cards!

Bank RegioBank: Name Stichting International Commission on Food Mycology. IBAN: NL93RBRB0778005968   BIC: RBRBNL21. Bank: RegioBank, Croeselaan 1, 3521 BJ Utrecht. Please mention ICFM workshop 2016.

The organizers reserve the right to cancel this conference if a sufficient number of registrations are not received after the registration deadline, 1st March, 2019. Upon cancellation of the event, registration fees will be refunded in full. In case of cancellation of this event, organizers are not liable for non-refundable (air) fares or ticket change penalties.

Ludwig Niessen (TU-München, Germany), Rob Samson (CBS, Utrecht, The Netherlands).

For the registration form click here.

Back to ICFM workshop 2019

Saturday, 30 January 2016 21:47


The meeting is open to participants from academia and industry interested in the field of food mycology as well as quality control and management in the food industry. Participants are invited to submit titles and abstracts for oral and poster
presentations until 1st April 2016. Download here the sample abstract for registration

The final program will be available from 1st May, 2016.

Deadline for registration is 1st March, 2016. Later registration will be possible until 1st April, 2016 without guarantee for accommodation at the venue.


Back to ICFM workshop 2016.

Saturday, 30 January 2016 21:45

Venue International ICFM workshop 2016

250px Freising marienplatz48307003Freising is a 50,000 citizen community situated in the heart of Europe, only a 30 minute train ride north east from the city of Munich.

The city of Freising is well known for its rich ecclesiastic history as well as for its importance as a center of food science and technology as well as beer brewing.

The Freising Cathedral (built in 1205) is one of the two home churches to the archbishop of Munich and Freising, an office once held by Cardinal Josef Ratzinger, pope emeritus Benedikt XVI.

The workshop will take place at “Kardinal Döpfner Haus”, a venue within the premises of the cathedral with lecture rooms and accommodation for participants.

The international airpo3t of Munich (MUC) Airport is close by with a direct bus connection to the venue (20 min). The airport is served directly from most European cities and many overseas destinations.


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Back to ICFM workshop 2016.

Thursday, 28 January 2016 14:32


BCN labs and IUMS sponsored the 2019 International workshop on Foodmycology and the IUMS outreach programme in Yogyakarta (Indonesia) 20-21 Februari 2020. If you are interested to sponsor the actvities of the commission, please contact DrThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

iumslogo  BCN Logo Color 


Friday, 29 January 2016 15:12




Direct examination

In foods spoiled by fungi it is often possible to ob-serve the responsible fungal growth directly by the naked eye followed by observations in a stereomi-croscope. This is due to the size of the fungal col-ony and that fungal growth normally takes place at the surface of the product. However the observation has to be made immediately after growth has taken place, since any handling of the product is bound to remove the visual appearance of the fungi. If fungal growth can be expected, it is always recommended to examine the food products by microscopy. Slides can be prepared by putting a small part or volume in a mounting medium (e.g. lactic acid with aniline blue). Preparations with the aid of adhesive tape as described on page 2 can also be helpful.

When fungal growth has been detected by direct examination, the fungus is streak-inoculated on an appropriate medium. This is preferably done with the aid of a stereomicroscope.

Direct plating

This is considered to be the more effective tech-nique for mycological examination of all foods. For foods such as grains and nuts, a surface disinfec-tion before direct plating is in most situations, con-sidered essential, to permit enumeration of fungi actually invading the food. An exception is to be made for cases where surface contaminants be-come part of the downstream mycobiota, e.g. wheat grains to be used in flour manufacture. In such cases grains should be investigated both with and without surface disinfection.

Surface disinfection: food particles are surface dis-infected by vigorous shaking in 0.4% freshly pre-pared chlorine for 2 minutes. A minimum of 100 particles should be disinfected and plated on each chosen medium. The chlorine must only be used once.

Rinse: after pouring off the chlorine, rinse once in sterile distilled or deionised water.

Plating: as quickly as possible, transfer food parti-cles with a sterile forceps to previously poured and set plates, at the rate of 5-10 particles per plate.

Incubation: the standard incubation regime for gen-eral-purpose enumerations is 25°C for 5 days. Plates should be incubated upright. The plates can be kept in perforated plastic bags to minimise evaporation. The perforation of the plastic bags, combined with a forced airflow through the incuba-tor is necessary to maintain the initial composition of the atmosphere in contact with the plates. It has been shown that accumulation of CO2 significantly influences the growth of fungi.

Results: express results as percentage of particles infected by fungi. Differential counting of a variety of genera and sometimes even species is possible using a stereomicroscope.

Dilution plating

Sample size: as large a sample as possible should be used. We normally recommend 5 g samples for homogeneous food materials (like flour) and 40 g samples for not homogeneous food materials (like grains).

Initial dilution: the initial dilution should be 1 + 9 in 0.1% peptone.

Soaking: Dried samples, where the fungi are deep seated or internal (e.g. as in grains and nuts), should be soaked for 30 minutes in 0.1% peptone at room temperature before stomaching or blend-ing. For powders and other homogeneous samples, no soaking is required

Homogenisation: use of Stomacher is preferred. If the food material is tough, a blender may be used. Homogenisation in 2 minutes is recommended if a Stomacher is used; 1 minute if a blender is used.

Further dilutions: 1:10 (= 1+9) in 0.1% peptone. We recommend 1:5 (= 1+4) in 0.1% peptone as an alternative, which is especially useful when small concentrations of fungi are present. Normally a maximum dilution of 10-3 is sufficient, however if the food has been in contact with soil a maximum dilu-tion of 10-5 may be necessary.

Plating: spread plates are recommended over pour plates. Inocula should be 0.1 ml per plate.

Incubation: The standard incubation regime for general purpose enumerations is 25°C for 5 days. Plates should be incubated upright.

GENERAL MEDIA (for formulations).

DRBC and DG18

Dichloran Rose Bengal Chloramphenicol agar (DRBC; King et al., 1979) and Dichloran 18% Glyc-erol agar (DG18; Hocking and Pitt, 1980) are rec-ommended as general purpose isolation and enu-meration media for foods of high water activity, i.e. aw> 0,90. However the following points should be taken into consideration:
1. DG18 is less suitable for fresh fruits and vege-tables, where studies have shown that this me-dium yields lower counts because basidiomyce-tous yeasts are often present.
2. Media containing Rose Bengal are light sensi-tive. Inhibitory compounds are produced in sig-nificant concentrations after 2 hours exposure to light (P.V.Nielsen, personal communication). It is therefore important to keep light exposure to Rose Bengal containing media well below a total of 2 hours during preparation, storage, in-oculation and incubation.
3. Media should be of approximately neutral pH and contain appropriate antibiotics.
4. We recommend a mixture of 2 antibiotics to be used instead of higher concentrations of a sin-gle compound. In our experience e.g. 100 ppm chloramphenicol is often insufficient to inhibit growth of bacteria from food products like vege-tables, spices, cereals and meats. We recom-mend the combined use of chloramphenicol (50 ppm) and chlortetracycline (50 ppm). Chloram-phenicol is heat-stable and may be added be-fore autoclaving. Chlortetracycline is heat labile and must be added to the media after autoclav-ing as a filter sterilised solution. It is relatively unstable in solution and thus must be freshly prepared or refrigerated. Gentamycin is not recommended, as it has been reported to cause inhibition of some yeast species.
5. The media are designed for use in dilution plat-ing. By direct plating overgrowth of fast growing species may occur, especially if surface sterili-sation is omitted. This is due to the addition of considerable amounts of nutrients to the media from the food product .


It is important to notice that all isolation media are selective to some degree, simply because of differ-ent competition abilities of the different species when they grow on the agar medium itself. Plant pathologists have solved that problem by using blotter tests and could, because of the rather few well known plant pathogenic species in anyone genus, often identify fungi to species level (Benoit and Mathur, 1970; Nath et al., 1970; Chidambaram et al., 1971; Kulshrestha et al., 1976; Agarwall et al., 1989) This is not possible for food or air-borne fungi as there are many species that cannot be differentiated or identified directly on seeds or other food items, especially the Penicillia and Fusaria. When using combinations of extract from cereals, fruits or vegetables with (enzymatically digested) protein sources and carbohydrates or chemically well defined media combined with different tem-peratures, some selection is thus unavoidable Two major principles for the development of selective media is inhibition of bacterial growth and reducing colony diameters of fast growing fungi (King et al., 1986; Beuchat, 1992a). Further selective principles may be introduced to select for more specific groups of fungi or even particular fungal species. These are dealt with below. The efficiency of media may also depend on the isolation method em-ployed. Stronger selective principles are needed for direct plating than for dilution plating.

Friday, 29 January 2016 15:12


The ICFM members provide the food and beverage industry with valuable resources and up to date research in the area of food and beverage mycology. The ICFM organizes symposia at the IUMS meetings as well as the IAFP and other meetings. The members of the Commission also organize workshops before the International Association in Food Protection (IAFP) annual meeting every other year as well as outreach programs in developing countries. To support all these activities, the Commission needs financial support. The ICFM is essential for the future of food and beverage mycology. The contributions from food and beverage companies as well as individuals are greatly appreciated.

Sponsorship from Companies:

  • Diamond Sponsors $10,000
  • Gold Sponsors $5,000
  • Silver Sponsors $2,500
  • Bronze Sponsors $1,000

The logo of the companies will be posted at the ICFM website as well as in the printed proceedings of the next ICFM meeting in June 2016 in Freising, Germany.

Sponsorship from Individuals:

  • Gold Patrons $250.00
  • Silver Patrons $100.00
  • Bronze Patrons $50.00

The names of the patrons will be posted at the ICFM website as well as. If you are interested to sponsor the commission or the workshop in 2016, please contact DrThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Friday, 29 January 2016 15:10

ICFM 2016 Workshop

The last ICFM workshop was held in Freising - Germany in 13-15 June 2016. 


The ICFM workshop was held for the third time in Freising, which is well known for its rich ecclesiastic history and for its importance as a centre of food science and technology as well as beer brewing. The Freising Cathedral (built 1205) it is one of the two home churches to the archbishop of Munich and Freising, one of which was Cardinal Josef Ratzinger, who was elected pope Benedikt XVI in 2005. The workshop took place at “Kardinal Döpfner Haus”, a venue within the premises of the cathedral with lecture rooms and accommodation for participants. The meeting was open to participants from academia and industries. Current research will be presented as oral or poster presentation.

For information on previous workshops (2010 and 2013) click here.

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