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Research Article Open Access
There have been several reports on the efficacy of using chemicals to control the growth of food-borne pathogens. This study investigated the antibacterial activity of six chemical food preservatives namely benzoic acid, acetic acid, sodium nitrite, ascorbic acid, citric acid and sodium chloride against food associated bacteria isolated from tinned tomatoes, banana and cooked rice. The bacterial isolates were Bacillus sp, Staphylococcus sp, Corynebacterium sp, Lactobacillus sp, Klebsiella sp and Streptococcus sp. The susceptibility test conducted revealed that benzoic acid had the highest zone of inhibition of 8 mm followed by acetic acid, sodium nitrite, ascorbic acid, citric acid and sodium chloride which had the least zone of inhibition. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) and minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) were 0.5 and 1.0.These findings indicated that benzoic acid could be used to inhibit the growth of food spoilage causing bacteria and food-borne pathogens and can be used to improve the safety of food products by extending their shelf life.