1.1 Background to the Study
Ready to eat foods can be described as
the status of foods of being ready for immediate consumption at the
point of sale. Ready to eat foods could be raw or cooked, hot or chilled
and can be consumed without further heat treatment (Tsang, 2002).
Different terms have been used to describe such ready to eat foods.
These includes convenient, ready, instant and fast foods. Examples of
such ready to eat foods include pastries, chicken pie, meat pie sausage
rolls, Burger, moin moon salad , fried meat, milk and milk products (
Caserani and Kinston, 1974). A general observation of our society shows a
social pattern characterized by increased mobility. Large numbers of
itinerary workers and less family or home centered activities. This
situation however has resulted in more ready to eat foods taken outside
home. Thus food vendor services become on the increase and
responsibility for good manufacturing practices of food such as good
sanitary measures and proper food handling have been transferred from
individuals/ families to the food vendors who rarely enforces such
practices (Musa and Akande, 2002).
According to Doyle and Evans (1999),
Food borne diseases are diseases resulting from ingestion of bacteria,
toxins and cells produced by micro organisms present in food. Food borne
illnesses is a major international health problem with consequent
economic reduction (Duff et al., 2003). Outbreaks of food borne diseases
are caused by foods that are contaminated intrinsically or that become
contaminated during harvesting, processing or preparation (Torok et al.,
1997). In most countries, the most common food borne illness is
Staphylococcus food intoxication (Talaro et al., 1996). Staphylococcus
aureus is a gram positive coccus, resistant to heat, drying and
radiation. Its strains can be pathogenic and relatively non pathogenic.
They produce some enzymes which are implicated with Staphylococcal
invasiveness and mainly extracellular substances some of which are heat
stable enterotoxins that render the foods dangerous even though it
appears normal ( Prescott et al., 2005). Once the bacteria have produced
toxin, the food can be extensively and properly cooked, killing the
bacteria without destroying the toxin. This is why there is need to
screen ready to eat foods such as chicken pie for toxin produced by
1.2 Problem Statement
In Nigeria, a number of foods have been
reported to have high incidence of bacteria (Adesiyun, 1995; Okonko et
al., 2009). But there is limited information on the health challenges
from food borne diseases from chicken pie retailed within a highly
populous community. Hence there is need to do screen for toxin
production production of Staphylococcus species.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The major objective of the study is the
screening for toxin production of Staphylococcus species isolated from
chicken pie sold in some restaurants in Ile Ife.
1.4 Research Questions
(1) what are ready to eat foods?
(2) what are Staphylococcus species?
(3) what are their contamination routes?
(4) How can they be isolated?
(5) why do we need to screen ready to eat food such as chicken pie for toxin produced by Staphylococcus species ?
1.5 Significance of the study
The purpose of this research is to
screen chicken pie sold in some restaurants in ILe Ife for toxins
produced by Staphylococcus species and highlight the health implications
of consuming such contaminated ready to eat food (chicken pie).
1.6 Scope of the study
The research focuses on the screening
for toxin production of staphylococcus species isolated from chicken pie
sold in some restaurants in Ile ife.
1.7 Limitations of the study.
The samples were collected from selected restaurants in Ile ife.
Adesiyun AA (1995). Bacteriologic
quality of some Trinidadian ready to eat foods and drinks and possible
health risks to consumers .J.food protein.58(3): 651- 655.
Caserani V, Kinston dR, (1974). Practical Crookery, 4th edition Edward Arnold Publishers London Pp. 1-10.
Doyle MP, Evans PD (1999). Food borne pathogens of recent concern. Ann. Revised Nutrient. 6: 25-41.
Duff SB, Scott EA, Mastilios MS, Todd
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JR, Sokolow R, Manvons S (1997). A large community outbreak of
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department Hongkong pp. 115-116.