Nutritional Composition And Microbial Spoilage Of <i>Dacryodes edulis</i> Fruits Vended In Southern Nigeria.
The nutritional composition and microbial spoilage of Dacryodes edulis fruit pulp were studied using standard procedures. Proximate analysis revealed that moisture content, lipids, protein, ash, crude fibre and carbohydrate ranged between 44.45-50.93%, 30.55-35.60%,2.89-4.16%, 2.65-2.76%, 1.52-1.61% and 9.75-12.59% respectively. The most abundant mineral element in the fruit pulp was phosphorus (692.55-698.40mg/100g) followed by potassium (540.81-553.15mg/100g), calcium (347.50-354.6mg/100g), magnesium (280.15-287.65mg/100g) and sodium (162.50-170.0mg/100g). The lowest concentration of nutrients use recorded for zinc (3.65-3.81mg/100g), iron (3.43-3.58mg/100g) and copper (0.38-0.45mg/100g). The heavy metals lead, cadmium, mercury and arsenic were not detected in all samples. The antinutrient levels in all samples were low following WHO standard for foods. The bacterial burden of fresh pulp samples was higher (2.82-3.18 log cfu/g.) than the fungi load (2.58-2.72 log cfu/g). Microbial spoilage resulted in log increase of these numbers. Of the seventeen microorganisms isolated from Dacryodes edulis pulp samples, Erwinia carotovora ,Pseudomonas flourescens and mostly with roasted or boiled maize (Zea mays) or sometimes with cassava in Nigeria. Bacillus subtilis had the highest frequencies of 32.7, 23.2 and 12.5% respectively amongst the bacteria. The predominant fungal Spoilage organisms were Sacchacromyces, cerevisiae, Rhizopus stolonifer and Penicilium expansum.