Mycological deterioration of stored palm kernels recovered from oil palm mill
AbstractPalm kernels obtained from Pioneer Oil Mill Ltd. were stored for eight (8) weeks and examined for their microbiological quality and proximate composition. Seven (7) different fungal species were isolated by serial dilution plate technique. The fungal species included Aspergillus flavus Link; A nidulans Eidem; A niger Vantiegham; Fusarium oxysporium Schlect; Penicillium fellatanium Biohrge; Rhizopus anhizus Fischer and R. stolonofer Engrenneng. The percentage internal mouldiness was quite high throughout the storage period, which ranged from 25 to 52. The average moisture content of 8.04% was found to be above the 5.7% acceptable for safe storage, but a little below 9% acceptable value at grading at the end of the study. Both the moisture content and the free fatty acid (FFA) increase with the length of the storage period, while the oil content decreased gradually. Fungal isolates played a significant role in the deterioration of palm kernel and hence, they pose a health risk, in addition to reduced economic value and possible industrial applications for quality products.
Key Words: Palm kernels, deterioration, microbial activity, quality, storage, mouldiness.
Ife Journal of Science Vol.6(2) 2004: 123-126