Milk and foods made from milk is manufactured into more stable dairy products of worldwide value, such as butter, cheese, ice cream, and yoghurt. Consumption of contaminated milk or dairy products by pathogens causes human gastrointestinal infection, which leads to diarrheal disease in human and hospitalization or death in severe cases especially among elderly and children. An assessment of milk and dairy products was designed to determine the microbiological quality of milk and dairy products consumed in Abakaliki, Nigeria. Culture techniques were used for isolation of enteric bacteria from retail dairy products and disk diffusion method were used to determine the Antibiotic Resistance profile of isolates. Bacteria pathogens isolated were characterized and identified using morphological and biochemical techniques. SPSS and Chi-square test were used for the analysis of the study, P-value of 0.02 indicates a significant difference between the bacteria pathogens counts. A total of 161 pathogenic bacteria were isolated from 100 dairy products. Salmonella spp heard (26.1%), Escherichia coli (44.1%) and Shigella spp. (29.8%). All identified isolates were found to be 100% susceptible to ciprofloxacin and gentamycin, with 66.7% for ofloxacin. Augmentin, ampicillin, chloramphenicol and spectinomycin was 100% resistant. Data obtained confirm that milk and dairy products retailed in Abakaliki pose a serious public health threat to consumers due to the presence of pathogenic bacteria. Standard and good storage conditions, as well as environmental and personnel hygiene should be practiced to prevent contamination of milk and dairy products for the safety of consumers.
Isolation, Identification, Antibiotic Resistant Profile, Enteric Pathogens, Milk, Dairy Products
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