Adebayo F. O. and Abdus Salam R. O.
As Nigeria is a producer of abundant fresh fruits but has effective preservation and packaging challenge, this work aims to compare some quality factors of mixed fruit Jam that was packaged in different locally available containers for a 15-month storage period at room temperature. Virtual inspection, pH, moisture content, total soluble solids and microbiological assessment of the samples were conducted to determine their keeping quality. Sensory evaluation was also conducted to determine the acceptability of the packaged samples. The result showed that after the 15-month storage at room temperature, gel consistency of the samples were maintained in the plastic plates and glass jar packages, while the samples in sachet water pouch and polythene packages became runny. The pH of the samples was between 3.4-3.5. The moisture content was between 28-37% while the total soluble solids was between 63-72%. The total microbial counts of all the samples after 15-months storage were within the acceptable range of 1 x 103cfu/ml. There was no fungal growth in all the packaged samples except in the transparent plastic plate that exhibit a growth of 6 x 102. There was no bacterial and coliform growth in all the packaged samples. The result of the sensory evaluation shows that glass jar and white plastic plate with screw cover container were significantly (p=0.05) more acceptable for packaging Jam spread than those in the other containers used. Hence, it was concluded that some locally available packages can be used for packing shelfstable small scale Jam production for in a developing nation.
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