Title: Microbiological quality of urban-vended salad and its association with gastrointestinal diseases in Kumasi, Ghana

Authors: Jessica Fung; Bernard Keraita; Flemming Konradsen; Christine Moe; Maxwell Akple

Addresses: Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, 1518 Clifton Road, Atlanta, GA, 30322, USA. ' International Water Management Institute, Africa Office, PMB CT 112, Cantonments, Accra, Ghana; Department of International Health, University of Copenhagen, Øster Farimagsgade 5, Building 9, DK-1353 Copenhagen K, Denmark. ' Department of International Health, University of Copenhagen, Øster Farimagsgade 5, Building 9, DK-1353 Copenhagen K, Denmark. ' Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, 1518 Clifton Road, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA. ' Department of Mechanical Engineering, Ho Polytechnic, P.O. Box HP217, Ho, Ghana

Abstract: The influence of consumption of salads on exposure to gastrointestinal diseases was assessed in urban environments in Kumasi, Ghana. Data was collected using a cross-sectional survey involving 15 salad sellers and 213 consumers and microbiological laboratory analysis of 96 samples of ready-to-eat salad. Findings showed higher contamination in street-vended salads than those in cafeterias with thermotelerant coliforms levels of 4.00-5.43 log units per 100 g salad, 32% of samples had Salmonella sp., and 17% had helminth eggs. Overall, there was an insignificant inverse relationship between salad consumption and gastrointestinal diseases among street salad consumers (RR = 0.81) and a strong positive relationship with cafeteria consumers (RR = 5.51). However, stratified analysis on relative risk showed a likelihood of strong influence from other risk factors embedded in socio-economic status such as poor sanitation. We recommend more integrated studies on risk factors for gastrointestinal diseases in poor urban areas.

Keywords: ready-to-eat salads; microbiological quality; poor urban environments; risk factors; gastrointestinal diseases; Ghana; street sold food; street vendors; cafeterias; cafes.

DOI: 10.1504/IJFSNPH.2011.044544

International Journal of Food Safety, Nutrition and Public Health, 2011 Vol.4 No.2/3/4, pp.152 - 166

Accepted: 17 Jun 2011
Published online: 29 Dec 2011 *

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