The Effects of Post Harvest Mycodeterioration on the Proximate Composition of Irvingia gabonensis Seeds
Postharvest losses of produce occasioned by microorganisms can be either in quantitative or qualitative terms. Both way, and on a global scale, fungal pathogens have been indicted as one of the most important agents responsible for postharvest losses of crops. Fungi associated with diseased Irvingia gabonensis (Baill) seeds were isolated bimonthly from these seeds from four open markets in the Lagos metropolis over a two year period. In terms of number and species abundance, Alayabiagba Market in Ajegunle area had the highest fungal occurrence while Aspergillus niger had a higher percentage occurrence from each, and all of the experimental sites combined. Visually healthy seeds of Irvingia gabonensis were also inoculated with one of the pathogenic fungal species (Aspergillus oryzae) isolated from the diseased seeds and left for between 8-10 days after. Both the visually healthy and Aspergillus oryzae infected (diseased) seeds of Irvingia gabonenesis were subjected to a proximate analysis, considering nutrients such as moisture, fats, ash, protein, crude fibre, carbohydrate and energy. The results from this mycodeterioration studies showed that the Aspergillus oryzae caused some significant reduction in the amount of most of the nutritional parameters in the Irvingia gabonensis seed. This work is probably a first report on pathogenic fungal species associated with the diseased seeds of Irvingia gabonensis in the open market as well as the effect of one of these species on the proximate composition of this seed.
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