World Journal of
Pharmaceutical and Life Sciences

( An ISO 9001:2015 Certified International Journal )

An International Peer Reviewed Journal for Pharmaceutical and Life Sciences
An Official Publication of Society for Advance Healthcare Research (Reg. No. : 01/01/01/31674/16)
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Abstract

BACTERIOLOGICAL QUALITY OF MIXED FRUITS/VEGETABLES SALADS AND SELECTED READY-TO-EAT VEGETABLES SOLD IN ABAKALIKI METROPOLIS, EBONYI STATE, NIGERIA

Orji J.O.*, Ayogu T.E., Nnachi A.U., Obaji M., Efunshile A.M., Okeh C.O., Uzoh C.V. and Asobie I.M.

ABSTRACT

Food-borne illnesses are major cause of death, worldwide. The range of unhygienic activities surrounding the cultivation, processing and sale of vegetables and vegetable products in Nigeria pose safety challenge on the overall outcome and consumption of vegetables due to the potential for food-borne infections. This study investigated the bacteriological quality of mixed fruits/vegetables salads and some selected ready-to-eat vegetables sold in Abakaliki Metropolis, Ebonyi State, Nigeria. Nine (9) mixed fruits/ vegetables salads purchased from 3 major eateries in Abakaliki, at 3 different sampling days for each eatery were analyzed alongside ready-to-eat leafy vegetables sold at Abakpa market surroundings using standard microbiological techniques. The results revealed high total aerobic plate counts in the range of 1.2 x 106 cfu/g to 4.5 x 106 cfu/g and 1.2 x 108 cfu/g to 5.4 x 108 cfu/g for the ready-to-eat vegetables and mixed fruits/vegetables salad samples respectively. On the other hand, the total coliform counts ranged from 1.3 x 106 cfu/g to 3.1 x 106 cfu/g and 4.5 x 107 cfu/g to 6.1 x 108 cfu/g for the ready-to-eat vegetables and mixed fruits/vegetables salad samples respectively. Fifty (50) bacterial isolates of 7 genera were identified including Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp., Bacillus spp., Pseudomonas spp., Klebsiella spp. and Serratia spp. Those found in the ready-to-eat leafy vegetables included Staphylococcus aureus (27.3%), Escherichia coli (18.2%), Salmonella spp. (18.2%), Bacillus spp. (18.2%), Pseudomonas spp. (9.09%) and Klebsiella spp. (9.09%). Only S. aureus (16.7%), E. coli (50.0%)and Klebsiella spp. (33.3%) were found in the mixed fruits salads sampled while Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas spp., Klebsiella spp. and Serratia spp. were found in varying proportions in the mixed vegetable salads sampled. The study revealed that both ready-to-eat vegetables and mixed fruits/vegetables salads sold in Abakaliki metropolis of Ebonyi state Nigeria were contaminated with potential pathogenic bacteria. This is very disturbing as the mixed fruits/vegetables salads were from major eateries in the state capital.

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