MICROBIOLOGICAL AND PROXIMATE ANALYSES OF ''DONKWA''VENDED IN BENIN CITY, EDO STATE, NIGERIA
Donkwa” is a popular Nigerian street snack made from roasted, dried and milled maize and groundnuts, chilli powder, sugar and peanut oil. This work was designed to investigate the microbiological and proximate analyses of donkwa sold in Benin City, Nigeria. Thirty (30) donkwa samples were purchased from
different hawkers in Benin City and transported to the laboratory for microbiological and proximate analyses. The bacterial and fungal counts of donkwa were enumerated on nutrient agar and potato dextrose agar respectively, using pour plate method. The isolates were identified based on their cultural, morphological and biochemical characteristics. Proximate and elemental content of the samples were analyzed using standard chemical methods. Total heterotrophic bacterial counts of donkwa samples ranged from 1.30±0.50×103- 6.50±4.30× 103 cfu/g while fungal counts ranged from 0.06±0.03×103-0.90±0.50×103sfu/g. Six bacterial species: Bacillus sp., Enterobacter sp., Micrococcus sp., Acetobacter sp., Streptococcus sp. and Klebsiella sp., as well as five fungi; Trichoderma sp., Penicillium digitatum, Aspergillus niger, Saccharomyces sp. and Rhizopus stolonifer were isolated from donkwa samples. The proximate analysis showed that the samples contained moisture (7.21±0.22 to 10.05±0.17%), protein (17.65±0.65 to 24.78±0.46%), ash (4.25±0.52 to 6.95±0.05%), fibre (6.72±0.18 to 8.19±0.12%), lipids (1.92±0.03 to 3.75±0.1%) and carbohydrate (53.92±0.31 to 59.73±1.39%). Mineral analysis in donkwa showed it contained iron (2.61±0.31 to 3.54±0.37 mg/g), copper (8.39±0.31 to 10.85±0.36 mg/g), sodium (26.22±0.89 to 31.05±2.04 mg/g), zinc (27.97±1.73 to 49.19±0.98 mg/g) and calcium (33.50±0.76 to 51.00±0.58 mg/g). Donkwa snack is nutritionally rich but contaminated with microorganisms including those of public health importance.