1.1 Background to the Study  

The presence of pathogenic microorganisms in foodstuffs, food contact surfaces, equipment, and utensils has led to a high degree of chronic illness ( Enuogu and Alan, 2000). Enuogu and Alan, (2000) have identified cafeteria workers a.d other food service workers as likely sources of food contamination. Many organisms have been found to proliferate readily at a wide temperature range (Enuogu and Alan, 2000). Biological contaminants such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, protozoa, and helminths constitute the major food-borne diseases; such as amoebiasis, salmonellosis, and giardiasis with varying degrees of severity ranging from mild indisposition to chronic or life-threatening illness or both (Edema et al., 2005). In developing countries, such contaminations are responsible for food-borne diseases such as cholera, campylobacteriosis, amoebiasis, and poliomyelitis (Edema et al.,2005). The presence of indicator organisms pathogens or high bacteria counts in foodstuffs, food contact surfaces, equipment, and utensils provide a direct and relevant measure of cleaning efficiency and hygiene (Moyo and Baudi, 2004). However, when contamination of food by a pathogen occurs in canteens, restaurants, fast food services, and cafeterias as a result of failure to observe proper sanitation, improper cooking method, cross-contamination, and the long interval between preparation and consumption, a large number of people over a wide area will be affected (Bean et al., 1990). Some food handling mistakes such as contaminated raw materials, inadequate cooking of food, may lead to its unsafe nature. The school cafeteria and the public food service center are commercial establishments that are patronized by both staff and students of the institution (Edema et al., 2005). And food safety should be ensured during the production, processing, storage, distribution, and preparation of food to ensure its safety for human consumption (Edema et al., 2005). Effective cleaning is of prime importance since it does not only remove gross contamination but also residues that could support the subsequent survival and growth of microorganisms ( Bean et al., 1990).

1.2 Problem Statement

Incidence of diarrhea, typhoid fever, and salmonellosis have been reported by Sadiq and Abdullahi (2004) among students of higher institutions of learning following eating at the foodservice center to be on the increase. This shows that the food prepared in those areas, utensils, and personal hygiene practices of the food handlers are questionable. Students who are the major patronizers may be exposed to potential dangers of food-borne diseases. Thus there is a need for bacteriological assessment of food sold at these centers at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology.

1.3 Objectives of the study

 The major objective of the study is the bacteriological assessment of two food service centers in the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology. This is to be achieved through the following specific objectives:

(i) identification of the food handling practices among food sellers

(ii) identification of the bacterial diseases common among the students and staff who patronize the school canteen at the campus.

1.4 Research questions

(1) what are food service centers?

(2) How safe is the food vended by these service centers?

(3) what are the hazards associated with food service centers?

(4) what are the food handling practices among the food sellers?

1.5 Significance of the Study

The research helps to identify the food handling practices among food sellers and to establish whether the practices are capable of exposing the students to bacterial borne diseases and identify the bacterial diseases common among the students and staff who patronize the school canteen at the campus. This will aid individuals, researchers, government, policymakers, and students in decision-making.

1.6 Scope of the Study

 The research focuses on the bacteriological assessment of two food service centers in the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology.


Abdullahi, I.O., Umoh, V.J., Ameh, J.B. and Galadima, M. (2004). Hazards Associated with Kilishi preparation in Zaria, Nigeria. Nigerian Journal of Microbiology 2: 339-345.

Bean, N., Griffin, M., Building, J.S. and Iveh, C.(1990). Foodborne Diseases outbreak- Year summary 1983. Journal of Food protection 53: 711.

Edema, M., Atagese, A.O., and Idowu, (2005). Microbial quality of Food wave processed Foods in Book of Abstract of the 29th Annual Conference and General meeting on Microbes as Agents of Sustainable Development Organized by Nigerian Society for Food Microbiology (NSM), UNAAB, Abeokuta from 6-10th November 2005.

Enugu, E.C, Allan, M.C. (2000). The temperature Related Effect on the Repressive Activities of Bacillus cereus in Associative Growth in Custard Medium. Nigerian Food Jourb 14(1): 6368.

Moyo, DZ., and Baudu (2004). A na soteriological Assessment of the Cleaning g and Disinfection Efficacy at the Midland Star University Canteen, Zimbabwe, Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences 7? 11): 1996-2001.




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