ISOLATION AND CHARACTERIZATION OF FUNGI ASSOCIATED WITH “SPOILED” TOMATOES IN GWAGWALADA

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

BACKGROUND OF STUDY

Tomato (lycopersicumesculentum) is an animal plant, having a weak woody stem covered with glistering red iscultivated in many parts of the world. the tomato plant is widely cultivated in many parts of the world and also has a smooth stain. It is green when immature but becomes bright red or yellow as it ripens. These products are considered important worldwide (Robins et al; 1994).

Tomato fruit is a well vegetable eaten raw as salad or for garnishing various foods in Nigeria as well as in many part of the world. The fruit contains high amount of carbohydrate, fat,organic acid,water,minerals,vitamins and pigments(Reddy,2009)

When spoilt as a result of life process of fungi, yeast and molds, the sugar are rapidly used up being changes into acetic acid lactic acid, alcohol and carbondioxide,the amount of these substances depending on their types of organism which are most activities particular sample in question.

In generally, adequate heat processing is given to tomato paste to achieve commercial sterility (speck 1994), but subsequent abusive post process handling /storage may lead to understand microbiological changes. It is public knowledge that can of tomato paste often show external evidence of spoilage under tropical retail condition (Anon, 1980)

Tomato fruit contains a lot of water which makes them susceptible to spoilage by microorganism.Also,the high water content makes storage and transportation of vegetable difficult. The microorganism reduce not only the nutritional values but also the market value s of tomato fruit. Micro organisms also affect the seller due to the spoilage of tomato.
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ISOLATION AND CHARACTERIZATION OF FUNGI ASSOCIATED WITH “SPOILED” TOMATOES IN GWAGWALADA