Isolation and Identification of Microbial Deteriogens of Fresh Tomatoes Stored at Ambient Temperature
Microbiology Research Journal International,
This study investigated the microorganisms associated with the deterioration of fresh tomato, Lycopersicum esculentum, stored at ambient temperature. A total of 60 tomatoes obtained from three different markets in Owerri metropolis, Nigeria were sampled and a total of 134 bacteria isolates and 140 fungal isolates were encountered. Bacteria isolated and identified were Bacillus spp, Pseudomonas spp, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella spp and Salmonella spp. The most prevalent bacteria isolate was Bacillus spp with 52.24% while Salmonella spp was the lowest prevailing isolate with 1.49%. The fungal isolates were Fusarium spp, Aspergillus spp, Rhizopus spp, Saccharomyces spp. Whereas Aspergillus spp was the most prevalent with 60.71% and was found in tomato sample from all the market, Rhizopus spp had the least prevalence of 0.71%. The presence of toxin producing fungi, Aspergillus spp and Fusarium spp which are capable of causing food poisoning as well as some bacterial isolates, raises concern over public health risks that may be associated with the consumption of unwholesome tomato.
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