Microbial Quality of Traditional Alcoholic Beverages Consumed in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

  • D K Mwambete Department of Pharmaceutical Microbiology, School of Pharmacy, Muhimbili University College of Health Sciences, P.O. Box 65013, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
  • M Justin-Temu
  • M Mashurano
  • O Tenganamba
Keywords: Traditional beverages, microorganisms, antibacterials, antifungal agents.


Three traditional alcoholic beverages available locally in Dar es Salaam namely ‘mbege', ‘mnazi' and ‘komoni' were subjected to microbiological assessments in order to determine their microbial quality and possible resistance to antibiotics among the isolated microorganisms. Twenty-seven samples were randomly collected from local drinking clubs in all the three districts included in the study. The microorganisms were isolated and identified by the conventional methods. Microbial counts were determined for the beverages. The total viable yeast counts in ‘mbege', ‘mnazi' and ‘komoni' were 2.37 x 1016, 3.9 x 1016 and 7.0 x 1010 cfu/ml respectively, while the total viable counts for bacteria in the same beverages were 9.50 x 109, 2.22 x 1010 and 1.88 x 1010 cfu/ml respectively. Antimicrobial sensitivity tests on the microorganisms showed that all bacteria were susceptible to a majority of the assayed antibacterials, whilst yeasts were resistant to all the antifungal agents tested except clotrimazole. The results indicate that these beverages pose a danger to public health due to the observed high ‘bio-burden' and call for better and safer means for the preparation, processing and handling of the products. .

Keywords: Traditional beverages, microorganisms, antibacterials, antifungal agents.

The East and Central African Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences Vol. 8 (3) 2005: pp 8-13

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eISSN: 1026-552X