Presence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa in coliform-free sachet drinking water in Ghana

Justin Stoler, Hawa Ahmed, Lady Asantewa Frimpong, Mohammed Bello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Sachet water is now an important source of drinking water security in West Africa, and the sachet industry continues to mature as market share increasingly shifts from cottage industry players to high-volume corporate producers. Modern sachet production lines are prone to the development of biofilms, and traditional microbiological indicators of fecal water contamination may not capture all the potential risks to human health in such a widely-consumed product. This study tested a sample of 80 sachets purchased along two commercial transects in low-income neighborhoods of Accra, Ghana, for total coliforms (TC), fecal coliforms (FC), Escherichia coli (EC), total heterotrophic bacteria (THB), and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (PA), and examined the relationships between these indicators and brand reputation. Just 5% of samples tested positive for TC, and none tested positive for FC and EC, yet 41% of samples tested positive for PA. After controlling for one popular brand, a negative brand reputation was associated with both THB presence (P=0.015) and the number of samples with THB>500CFU/mL (P=0.038), but PA was found in brands of both positive and negative reputations, and was only correlated with THB counts. The emergence of PA presents an opportunity for the re-evaluation of packaged water quality standards in a rapidly-globalizing, urban environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)242-247
Number of pages6
JournalFood Control
StatePublished - Sep 1 2015


  • Drinking water
  • Ghana
  • Pseudomonas
  • Sachet water
  • West Africa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science


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