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N. Uma Maheswari* and P. Kokila


The usage of dry fish usually obtained from the open shelf in most communities of the developing countries has raised some health related concerns. Curing is a traditional method for preservation of fish especially in rural areas. The quality of salted and sun dried fishes are adversely affected by the occurrence of microorganisms. The present study deals with the microbiological assessment of dry fishes such as Nethili, Panna, Thirrukkai, Valai, and Madavai were purchased from Uzhavar Sandhai, Mannargudi, Thiruvarur (Dt), Tamil Nadu, India. Thhe samples were then transported in clean polythene bags to the PG and Research Department of Microbiology laboratory for microbiological analysis. The bacterial and fungal species were isolated and identified from the five different types of the dry fishes. Nearly 6 bacterias, 8 fungal species are isolated and identified. The moisture and pH and level are monitored in the terms of three month of storage and also count the bacterial and fungal colonies using colony counter. The heavy metals of Fe, Cu, and Zn are also measured. All the bacterial and fungal colonies were analyzed by the mean values. Totally 6 bacteria and 8 fungi were isolated. E.coli and Aspergillus niger was predominant isolates from the all the dry fish samples. Microbial population frequently were high in Valai, followed by Madavai, Thirukkai, Panna and Nethili. The poor quality of dried fishes were mainly due to unhygienic processing, inadequate salting, unhygienic drying, use of spoilage fish for processing and lack of air tight packing of the dried fishes. Drying along with salting and smoking as a fish preservation technique had been practiced perhaps longer than any other food preservation technique.

Keywords: Dry fish, pH, Heavy metals, Moisture.

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