A. B. Ella 1*, F. A. Ella 2, M. U. Effiong 3
- Department of Science Laboratory Technology, Benue State Polytechnic, Ugbokolo, Benue State, Nigeria
- Department of Biology Education, Federal College of Education (Technical), Umunze, Anambra State, Nigeria
- Department of Zoology, University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria
The study was conducted to investigate the microbial qualities of some herbal products in Benue State, Nigeria. A total of twenty-one samples were randomly collected from herbal medicine sales outlets and retail pharmacy outlets and subjected to bacteriological examination using pour plate and modified pour plate method for isolation of bacteria and fungi colonies respectively. Gram reaction, Potassium Hydroxide string techniques and Biochemical analysis were used for identification of bacterial isolates. While fungi colonies were identified using simplified key to classes of fungi. Four microorganisms namely Escherichia coii, Salmonella typhi, Staphylococcus aureus and Fungi namely Aspergillus sp., Mucorsp., Fusarium sp., and Rhizopus sp. were also found to be implicated in some of the samples examined. The total bacterial counts for Escherichia coii, Staphylococcus aureus, Salmonella typhi and Fungi ranged from 1.50 � 103-13.0�103, 1.0�103-4.0�103, 1.0�102-1.5�102 and 1.2�104-6.0�103cuf/ml respectively. The microbial load of the products varied considerably. Six (28.6%) of the samples were without microbial contamination while fifteen (71.4%) were contaminated by one or more of the microorganisms isolated. 7(33.3 %) of the samples were contaminated by E. coli, 1 (4.8 %), 5(23.8%) Staphylococcus aureus, 3(27.3%) Aspergillus sp., 4(36.4%) Mucorsp., 2(18.2%) Fusarium sp. and 2(18.2%) Rhizopus sp. respectively. This research indicated that herbal medicinal products in Benue region of Nigeria required an urgent attention in process improvement to provide better quality products for consumers.