Microbial Risk Assessment of Urban Agricultural Farming: A Case Study on Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology Campus, Kumasi, Ghana

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Author(s) Nana O.B. Ackerson | Esi Awuah
Pages 118-125
Volume 1
Issue 3
Date March, 2012
Keywords Faecal coliform, helminth egg, irrigation water, lettuce, microbial risk assessment

This study was carried out on KNUST campus, Kumasi, Ghana, to assess the microbial quality of irrigation water and on vegetables as well as the risk associated with vegetable irrigated farming. Microbiological contamination of irrigation water and lettuce was monitored weekly for two months from eight farms for faecal and total coliform, and helminth eggs levels. Quantitative microbial risk assessment was subsequently evaluated. Faecal coliform and helminth egg concentrations of irrigation water ranged from 3.2x103 to 3x104 faecal coliform/100 ml and 6 to 15 eggs/l respectively and that of the lettuce ranged from 7x102 to 1.8x103 faecal coliform/10 g and 6 to 19 eggs/100 g respectively. Ascaris lumbricoides, Schistosoma, Trichuris trichiura, and Strongyloides larvae were isolated from both irrigation water and on lettuce. Ascaris and Escherichia coli were the reference organisms used in the quantitative microbial risk assessment. The annual risk of infections to the farmers for both pathways was 10-2 for Ascaris and 10-1 for E. coli.

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