Microbiological quality of cold smoked sardine, Sardinella maderensis (Lowe, 1839) in four markets in Lagos Metropolis, Lagos State, Nigeria
Microbial assessment of smoked Sardinella maderensis procured from four markets: Badagry, Bariga, Makoko and Ojo in Lagos metropolis were carried out between October 2014 and January 2015. Nineteen microorganisms namely: Bacillus sp, Clostridium sp., Escherichia coli, Lactobacillus sp., Proteus sp, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella sp, Shigella sp., Staphylococcus aureaus, Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus wentii, Fusarium sp., Mucor sp, Penicillium sp, Rhizopus stolonifer, Saccharomyces sp. and Trichoderma sp. were found in the samples. The lowest mean for bacterial count was 0.350x106 cfu/g for smoked fish from the control in October (wet season), while the highest count of 2.075x106 cfu/g was for Badagry Market in December (dry season). This exceeded the FAO maximum acceptable limit (105 cfu/g/ml). The frequency of occurrence of bacteria species was higher in the rainy than the dry season while occurrence of fungi was higher in the dry season than wet season but lower than the occurrence of bacteria. This high level of microbial contamination can be traceable to handlers and environment to which this fish is exposed during smoking and selling exercises, and considering the danger it portends to human health, public health and food safety authorities should intensify their monitoring efforts towards controlling such contamination.
Keywords: Microbiological quality, smoked fish, markets, season