Fungal contamination of markets in Warri Metropolis: A threat to food security and human health

Paper Details

Research Paper 01/08/2020
Views (396) Download (26)

Fungal contamination of markets in Warri Metropolis: A threat to food security and human health

E. M. Ilondu
J. Bio. Env. Sci.17( 2), 5-14, August 2020.
Certificate: JBES 2020 [Generate Certificate]


There is always population surge towards physical market because it is a major outlet for purchase of food items and other human needs. Biological contamination of air is one of the serious issues of the environment varying among geographic areas and sampling heights. The aeromycology of three major markets in Warri metropolis which include Effurun market, Igbudu market and Main market using open plate method was evaluated. The study was conducted for the period of six (6) months (April to September, 2017) at two heights: human height (1.5m) and building height (3.5m) and three different locations (foodstuffs, clothing and abattoir sections) in each of these markets. Petri dishes containing PDA medium were exposed for 5 mins and incubated in the laboratory for 2–3 days. Developed fungal colonies were counted and sub-cultured to fresh PDA medium for identification by morphological and microscopic examination using standard identification keys. A total of 6145 colonies with 35 species were isolated and identified. Main fungi identified with their percentage frequency of occurrence include Aspergillus niger 699(11.37%), Mucor mucedo 459(7.47%), Penicillium candidum 404(6.57%), P. digitatum 395(6.43%), Monilia sp 324(5.27%) among others. Off these fungi, members of the Deuteromycotina contributed 46.58%, Ascomycotina 38.76% and Zygomycotina 14.66%. The population of fungal colonies varied from month to month as follows: July>August>June>September>May>April. Human height has 4285(60.73%) colonies while building height was 1860(30.27) colonies. Igbudu market, Main market and Effurun market have 2412, 2030 and 1702 fungal colonies respectively. There are strong indications that these market environments are heavily contaminated with airborne fungal spores which may pose a serious threat to food security and human health. Continuous clean-up exercise of these markets is imperative.


Abotulu AA, Ojeh VN. 2013. Structural properties of dwelling and thermal comfort in tropical cities: evidence from Warri, Nigeria. An International Journal of Science and Technology 2(2), 67-98.

Adebayo-Tayo BC, Adebayo D. Umpuko SE. 2009. Mycoflora associated with onion bulb (Allium cepa) showing rot infections and their aflatoxigenic ability. Nigerian Journal of Mycology 2(1), 178-187.

Ahire YR, Sangale MK. 2012. Survey of aeromycoflora present in vegetable and fruit market. Elixir Applied Botany 52, 11381-11383.

Atanda OO, Raji O, Aroyeun S. 2009. Ochratoxin A contamination of cereal and legume grains in South western Nigeria. Nigerian Journal of Mycology    2(1), 98-106.

Ayanbimpe GM, Klapwera SD, Kuchin D. 2010. Indoor air mycoflora of residential dwellings in Jos metropolis. African Health Sciences 10(2), 172-176.

Barnett H, Hunter BB. 1999. Illustrated Genera of Imperfect Fungi. 4th edition. The American Phytopathological Society St. Paul Minnesota, USA. 218p.

Bhajbhuje MN, Akare A. 2018. Variation in extramural aeromycoflora of the Lake of Futala Nagpur (M.S.) India. International Journal of Life Sciences 6(3), 769-755.

Djeri Y, Ameyapoh DS, Karou K, Anani K, Soney YA, Sonza C. 2010. Assessment of microbiological qualities of yam chips marketed in Togo. Advanced Journal of Food Science and Technology 2(5), 236-241.

Ellis D, Davis S, Alexion H, Handke R, Bartley R. 2007. Description of medicinal fungi. Mycological Unit, University of Adelaide, Australia. Pp 1-204.

Fagbohun ED, Abegunde OK, David OM. 2010. Nutritional and mycoflora changes during storage of plantain chips and the health implications. Journal of Agricultural Biotechnology and Sustainable Development 2(4), 61-65.

Gosh D, Dhar P, Chakraborty T, Uddin N, Das AK. 2011. Study of aeromycoflora in indoor and outdoor environment of National Library, Kolkata. African Journal of Microbiology Research 5(31), 5569-5574.

Grin-Gofron A, Bosiacka B. 2015. Effect of meteorological factors on the composition of selected fungal spores in the air. Aerobiologia 31, 63-72.

Hernandez H, Martinez LR. 2018. Relationship of environmental disturbances and the infectious potential of fungi. Microbiology 164. 233-241.

Hogale KR, Patil BD. 2008. Studies on airspora of vegetable market at Karad, Maharashta. Nature Environment and Pollution Technology 7(3), 461-466.

Ilondu EM, Nweke OC. 2016. Studies on the mycoflora of the outdoor air environment of Delta State University Site III, Abraka, Nigeria. Journal of Chemistry and Biochemistry 4(1), 47-61.

Ilondu EM. 2013a. Leafspot disease of taro cocoyam (Colocasia esculenta (L.) Schott) caused by Botryodiplodia theobromae and in-vitro control with agrochemicals. Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment 11(384), 1404-1408.

Ilondu EM. 2013b. Etiology and assessment of leafspot disease of sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas (L) Lam) in some farms in Delta State, Nigeria. Agriculture and Biology Journal of North America 4(4), 476-484.

Ilondu EM. 2017. Effects of different drying methods on the mycoflora associated with cocoyam (Colocasia esculenta (L.) Schott) chips (Achicha) in storage. Journal of Advances in Biology and Biotechnology 11(3), 1-7.

Kakde UB, Kakde HU. 2012. Incidence of post-harvest disease and airborne fungal spores in a vegetable market. Acta Bot. Croat. 71(1), 147-157.

Khan S, Fatema S. 2015. Aerobiological investigation of vegetable and fruit market and related allergic diseases of Beed, Maharashtra. Journal of Advances in Applied Sciences and Technology 2(2-3), 43-47.

Khattab A, Estella L. 2008. Effect of sampling on the concentration of airborne fungi spores. Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology 101, 529-534.

Louis B, Yekwa LE, Waikhom SD, Nawaz K, Aflikhar S, Motloi TS, Tambo E, Roy P. 2017. Upsurge in Curvularia infections and global emerging antifungal drug resistance. Asian Journal of Scientific Research 10(4), 299-307.

Mahadeo B, Kalpit M. 2017. Aerobiological studies over paddy fields in the Ratnagri District of Maharashtra State. International Journal of Current Research 9(06), 52441-52444.

Makut MD, Nyam MA, Shehu L, Anzaku SJ. 2014. A survey of the mycroflora of the outdoor air environment of Keffi metropolis, Nasarawa State, Nigeria. African Journal of Microbiology Research 8(27), 2650-2655.

Mehrotra RS, Aggarwal A. 2004. Plant Pathology 2nd edition. Tata McGraw-Hill Publishing Company Limited, New Delhi, 846p.

Meraj-ul-Haque MB, Patil A. 2016. Diversity of aeromycoflora in indoor and outdoor environment. Imperial Journal of Interdisciplinary Research 2(8), 240-248.

Njokuocha RC, Agwu COC. 2007. Airborne fungal spores in Nsukka municipality. Nigerian Journal of Botany 20(2), 349-359.

Okigbo RN, Ramesh RP, Amobi TF. 2008. Isolation of mycoflora from dried cassava vended in Awka, Anambra State, Nigeria, Nigerian Journal of Mycology 1(1), 34-44.

Prasad H, Tiwari P, Ekka MK. 2015. Study of outdoor aeromycoclora of Sai Temple, Amapara, Raipur District (C.G.), India. IOSR Journal of Environmental Science, Toxicology and Food Technology 1(4), 08-13.

Reddy NJM. 2018. Airspora of library in relation to biodeterioration of paper materials. International research Journal of Science and Engineering 6(2), 109-113.

Shahzady M, Ahmad T, Moosa A, Khan WA, Naeem IM, Nasir M, Khan, MA, Abbas A. 2017. A general review of Cercospora leafspot disease of mungbean and its management. International Journal of Scientific Footprints 5(2), 81-84.

Sharma OP. 1989. Textbook of Fungi. Tata McGraw Hill Publishing Company Ltd, New Delhi. 365p.

Syed AA, Sarangi SK. 2013. Comparative studies on the air microflora in slaughtering houses of Bangalore City. International Journal of Pharmaceutical Science Invention 2(9), 11-14.