American Journal of Microbiological Research
ISSN (Print): 2328-4129 ISSN (Online): 2328-4137 Website: Editor-in-chief: Apply for this position
Open Access
Journal Browser
American Journal of Microbiological Research. 2019, 7(2), 57-62
DOI: 10.12691/ajmr-7-2-4
Open AccessArticle

Microbiological Quality of Packaged and Exposed Cassava, Yam and Plantain Flour Sold in Markets and Supermarkets in Port Harcourt Metropolis, Nigeria

N. N. Odu1, , M. Elenwo1 and N. Maduka2

1Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Science, University of Port Harcourt, Port Harcourt Nigeria

2Department of Microbiology, College of Natural and Applied Sciences, Wellspring University, Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria

Pub. Date: May 04, 2019

Cite this paper:
N. N. Odu, M. Elenwo and N. Maduka. Microbiological Quality of Packaged and Exposed Cassava, Yam and Plantain Flour Sold in Markets and Supermarkets in Port Harcourt Metropolis, Nigeria. American Journal of Microbiological Research. 2019; 7(2):57-62. doi: 10.12691/ajmr-7-2-4


The presence of pathogens in edible flours generally considered as microbiologically safe is a threat to public health. In this study, microbial load of thirty (30) samples of exposed and packaged cassava, plantain and yam flour from open markets and supermarkets were determined. Similar flours were prepared in the laboratory as control. Morphological and molecular characterization methods were adopted in this study. On average, packaged flour samples had lower total fungal count (TFC) and total heterotrophic count (THC) than exposed flour samples. Maximum THC of the flour samples were slightly above 5 log10cfu/g except packaged yam flour (3.91 log10cfu/g). THC, TFC, Bacillus and Staphylococcal count of the control samples range between 4.64-4.72, 2.3-2.6, 2.3-2.8, 3.44-3.53 log10cfu/g, respectively. As for packaged yam, plantain and cassava flours, their TFC range between 3.45-3.55, 2.30-3.10 and 2.15-2.80 log10cfu/g, while THC was 3.70-3.91, 2.0-5.69, 5.48-5.54 log10cfu/g, respectively. Therefore, exposing cassava, plantain and yam flour in open markets should be discouraged and strict good manufacturing practices during flour processing are recommended in order to drastically reduce microbial load in edible flour.

packaged exposed flour microbiological quality

Creative CommonsThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit


[1]  Berghofer LK, Hocking AD, Miskelly D, Jansson E. Microbiology of wheat and flour milling in Australia. Intl. J Food Microbiol. 2003; 85: 137-149.
[2]  Asamudo NU, Ndubuisi-Nnaji UU, Fatunla OK. Microbiological and proximate composition of different stored wheat flour brands sold in Uyo Metropolis, Nigeria. J Appli. Life Sci. Intl. 2017; 10(4):1-11.
[3]  Pérez EE, Mahfoud A, Domínguez CL, Guzmán R. Roots, tubers, grains; flours and starches. Utilization in the development of foods for conventional, celiac and phenylketonuric consumers. Food Proc. Tech. 2013; 4 (3): 1-6.
[4]  Omohimi C, Piccirillo C, Ferraro V, Roriz MC, Omemu MA, Santos SM, Ressurreição SD. Abayomi L, Adebowale A, Vasconcelos, MW, Obadina O, Sanni L, Pintado MME. Safety of yam-derived (Dioscorea rotundata) foodstuffs-chips, flakes and post-processing conditions. Foods. 2019; 8(12): 1-19.
[5]  Gacheru PK, Abong GO, Okoth MW, Lamuka PO, Shibairo SA, Katama CKM. Microbiological safety and quality of dried cassava chips and flour sold in Nairobi and coastal regions of Kenya. Afri. Crop Sci. J. 2016; 24: 137-143.
[6]  Aruwa CE, Ogundare O. Microbiological quality assessment of pupuru and plantain flours in an urban market in Akure, Ondo state, south western Nigeria. Open Access Library J. 2017, 4: 1-11.
[7]  Osunde ZD. Minimizing postharvest losses in yam (Discorea spp.): Treatments and techniques. Chapter 12 In: Food Science and Technology to Improve Nutrition and Promote National Development. Robertson GL and Lupien JR. (eds). 2008: 1-12.
[8]  Alum EA, Urom SMOC, Ben CMA. Microbiological contamination of food: The mechanisms, impacts and prevention. Intl. J Sci. Tech. Resear. 2016; 5 (3): 65-78.
[9]  Omowunmi OO, Motunrayo EL. Effect of different sun drying surfaces on the functional properties and microbial loads of unripe plantain flours. Frontiers Environ. Microbiol. 2017; 3(3): 50-55.
[10]  Somorin YM, Bankole MO, Omemu AM, Atanda OO. Impact of milling on the microbiological quality of yam flour in Southwestern Nigeria. Resear. J Microbiol. 2011; 6: 480-487.
[11]  Odetunde SK, Adebajo LO, Lawal AK, Itoandon EE. Investigation of microbiological and chemical characteristics of cassava flour in Nigeria. Global Adv. Resear. J Microbiol. 2014; 3 (3): 031-040.
[12]  Kenechukwu AO, Ndidi OL. Public health significance of food borne pathogens in edible flours. Afri. J Microbiol. Resear. 2015; 9(8): 509-514.
[13]  Ogundare-Akanmu OA, Inana ME, Adindu MN. Preliminary quality evaluation of selected plantain flour (Musa paradisiacal) sold in Port Harcourt markets, Nigeria. Food Sci. Quality Mgt. 2015; 35:7-10.
[14]  Eleazu CO, Amajor JU, Ikpeama AI, Awa E. Studies on the nutrient composition, antioxidant activities, functional properties and microbial load of the flours of 10 elite cassava (Manihot esculenta) varieties. Asian J Clin. Nutri. 2011; 3 (1): 33-39.
[15]  Ajayi AO. Microbiological quality of plantain (Musa paradisiacal). Nig. J Microbiol. 2016; 30(2): 3962-3969.
[16]  Aruwa CE, Ogundare O. Microbiological quality assessment of pupuru and plantain flours in an Urban market in Akure, Ondo State, South Western Nigeria. Open Access Library J. 2017; 4: 1-11.
[17]  Lawal BM, Olaoye IO, Ibrahim SO, Sanusi BA, Oni IO. Shelf life of yam flour using two different packaging materials. Ameri. J Food Sci. Nutri. 2014; 1 (1): 18-23.
[18]  Onyenwoke CA, Simonyan KJ. Cassava post-harvest processing and storage in Nigeria: A review. Afri. J Agric. Resear. 2014; 9 (53): 3853-3863.
[19]  Odu NN, Njoku HO, Mepha HD. Microbiological quality of smoked-dried mangrove oysters (Crassoostrea gasar) sold in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. Agric. Bio. J. North America. 2012; 3(9): 360-364.
[20]  Eman MS, Sherifa MS. Microbiological loads for some types of cooked chicken meat products at Al-Taif Governorate, KSA. World Appl. Sci. J. 2012; 17 (5): 593-597.
[21]  APHA (American Public Health Association). In F. P. Downes and K. Ito (Eds.). Compendium of methods for the microbiological examination of foods (4th edition). Washington, DC: American Public Health Association. 2001.
[22]  Cheesbrough M. District Laboratory Practice in Tropical Countries, Part 2. Cambridge University Press, 2000, 400- 434.
[23]  Frazier WC, WestHoff DC. Classification and isolation of moulds /yeast and yeast like fungi in food microbiology 4th edition. McGraw-Hill Book Company Singapore. 2000, 243-253.
[24]  International Commission on Microbiological Specifications for Foods (ICMSF). Microorganisms in Foods 6: Microbial Ecology of Food Commodities; Springer: New York, NY, USA, 1998.
[25]  Olowoyo OO, Akinyosoyo FA, Adetunji FC. Microorganism associated with some cassava (Manihot esculenta crantz) production. J. Resear. Review Sci. 2001; 2: 10-14.
[26]  Djeri B, Ameyapoh Y, Karou DS, Anani K, Soney K, Adjrah Y, Souz C. Assessment of microbiological qualities of yam chips marketed in Togo. Adv. J Food Sci. Tech. 2010; 2 (5): 236-241.