Main Article Content
Aim: In this study, the concentrations of Cu, Fe and Ni, long term exposure and daily consumption of ready-to-eat food foods sold at Petrol station’s Atmospheric conditions (AF) in Calabar Metropolis was evaluated.
Methods: Foods samples, including such prepared ready-to-eat foods as garri, meat pie, stew, rice, beans, afang and melon soups were collected at the point of sale at the fuel stations, about 7:00 am in the morning before they were opened for sale (and exposed to the environment of the filling stations). These were labelled “Before”. At about 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm same day, the same ready-to-eat food samples were collected again at the same spots (after they have been exposed to the filling stations atmospheric environment). These were labelled “After”. The food samples were collected in such a way that all the Garri purchased before, across the different filling stations were mashed together as a single sample, while the ones purchased after were equally collected to form a single sample. The other food samples were handled in like manner.
Results: The levels of Cu, Fe and Ni recorded for garri, afang soup, melon soup, white rice, beans, stew and meat pie (ready-to-eat meals) . The results showed that the level of Ni was significantly high in garri, afang soup, melon soup, white rice, beans and stew, while the level of Fe was significantly (p<0.05) increased in garri, melon soup, white rice, beans, stew and meat pie after 6 hours of exposure to petrol station’s atmospheric conditions. It was also observed that the level of Cu was significantly high in garri and white rice after 6 hours of exposure to petrol station’s atmospheric conditions. This also gave an indication exposure of most ready-to-eat foods to the petrol stations atmospheric conditions for 6 hours, during sales, are likely to results in the contamination of the foods with Ni.
Conclusion: In this study, such ready-to-eat foods as garri, afang soup, melon soup, white rice, beans, stew and meat pie displayed for sale at the petrol refueling stations in Calabar were observed to be contaminated with Cu, Fe and level of Ni.