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Risks Related to the Consumption a Traditional Drink (Koutoukou) Obtained by Distillation of Palm Wine or Sucrose

Koffi Maïzan Jean-Paul BOUATENIN , Fatoumata CAMARA, Wahauwouélé Hermann COULIBALY, Alfred Kohi KOUAME, Richard N’Goran KOUADIO, Koffi Marcellin DJE
American Journal of Microbiological Research. 2021, 9(2), 54-61. DOI: 10.12691/ajmr-9-2-4
Received April 01, 2021; Revised June 03, 2021; Accepted June 16, 2021

Abstract

Koutoukou (KTK) is one of the most consumed alcoholic drinks in Côte d’Ivoire. This artisanal liquor is made in inadequate hygienic conditions with undefined alcohol levels. Thus the abuse of Koutoukou is associated with a range of social problems, physical and mental disorders, including depression and anxiety, obesity and the risk of accidents. this traditional alcoholic beverage represents a potential danger for the consumer. This study was to determine the characteristics of Koutoukou and the discomfort associated with its consumption. Thus a survey and analysis of the biochemical and microbiological characteristics of this traditional drink was carried out. Results showed that 92% of respondents were consumers of Koutoukou. However, 28.57% were hospitalized after consuming Koutoukou. The most common symptoms are headaches and vomiting. According to the biochemical analysis, Koutoukou produced with palm wine is the most acidic with a concentration of 0.16 ± 0.09 % for a pH of 3.90 ± 0.47. However, the soluble sugar (10.58 ± 0.60 ° Brix) and ethanol (51.36 ± 2.7 %) contents are higher in Koutoukou produced from sugar water and yeast. Hydroquinone was detected in Koutoukou produced with palm wine at a low concentration of 0.07 ± 0.01%. In addition, the presence of mesophilic aerobic, especially staphylococci and Bacillus was observed in all the beverages analyzed. In view of the problems associated with the consumption of this liquor, a national information campaign on the consumption of Koutoukou would be beneficial.

1. Introduction

In West Africa, particularly in Côte d'Ivoire, the introduction of highly alcoholic beverages dates back to the slave trade and the beginning of the colonial period when alcohol was used to conclude alliances and territorial agreements with the customary chiefs 1. Prior to this period, the populations had only low-alcohol fermented drinks, the most common of which were palm wines and beers of corn, millet and sorghum 2. As for local brandies, called Koutoukou (KTK), it was only late that they were produced in Côte d'Ivoire, thanks to the introduction of the still from neighboring Ghana around 1940 3. It is obtained by distillation of musts from fermented products such as palm wine, sugar cane juice or sugar water with added yeast 4. Thus, this distillation has long remained clandestine and considered a secondary activity to agriculture, especially for young farmers. However, the production of this drink has been sustained by the increase in oil palm plantations 5. According to 6, the use of artisanal brandies obtained from palm wine, sugar cane juice and sugar water with yeast added, has also become permanent on the occasion of ancestor worship ceremonies, funerals and weddings. According to 3, Koutoukou is one of the most widely consumed alcoholic beverages in Côte d'Ivoire because of its low cost, especially after the devaluation of the CFA franc in January 1994. Since then, the impoverishment of the social strata has favored the proliferation of this artisanal liquor and its substitution for industrial alcoholic beverages whose selling price is constantly increasing. However, the production and marketing of the Koutoukou is beyond the control of the state. Indeed, several types and forms of Koutoukou are found on the market (Koutoukou + root, Koutoukou + bark) whose biochemical and microbiological characteristics of the additives are not determined. Moreover, the production of Koutoukou is carried out under inadequate hygienic conditions with undefined alcohol levels. Thus made the biochemical and microbiological qualities of the finished product could be affected. Abuse of Koutoukou is associated with a range of social problems, physical and mental disorders, including depression and anxiety, obesity, and the risk of accidents 7. Since the lifting of the ban on this drink by the Ivorian State in 1999, work has been carried out by several authors. 8 conducted a study on the impact of chronic short-term consumption of Koutoukou on certain hematological and biochemical parameters. The comparative effect of acute drinking of Koutoukou palm wine and pastis 45 on memorization in humans was carried out by 9. Similarly, the work of 10 focused on the evolution of the consumption of alcoholic beverages sold in Côte d'Ivoire. Despite these different works, none of them has yet led to the stabilization and normalization of Koutoukou. Thus, the general objective of this work is to determine the characteristics and discomforts related to the consumption of Koutoukou in order to ensure consumer safety.

2. Material and Methods

2.1. Participants, Study Design, and Sampling

Two types of Koutoukou were used in this study: Koutoukou produced from sugar water and yeast, and Koutoukou produced with palm wine. These two types of drinks have been at Koutoukou saleswomen in the commune of yopougon (Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire).

2.2. Survey Form

A survey form was developed and used to conduct surveys on the consumption of Koutoukou in the city of Abidjan, particularly in the commune of Yopougon (District where this drink is more widely consumed in Côte d'Ivoire).

2.3. Execution of the Survey (Consumer Survey Sheet)

The sampling method adopted for this work is three-stage cluster sampling with the survey site (the commune of Yopougon) at the primary level, the sales sites at the secondary level, and the respondents at the tertiary level. The survey was conducted from August to October 2019. The commune of Yopougon was divided into 20 sites, and with 5 people per site, a total of 100 peoples were interviewed. The questionnaire was explained chapter by chapter to respondents. In the sites where the respondents could not read and write, a person from the site who could read and write and who spoke the same ethnic group as the respondents was asked to be an interpreter. The questions were either multiple-choice questions with 2 to 6 suggested answers or questions with yes or no answers. The questionnaire is composed of 3 parts. The first part focused on the level of knowledge of the Koutoukou, the second part on the profile of consumers and the last part on the discomforts related to the consumption of the Koutoukou.

2.4. Sampling

The various samples from Koutoukou were collected in the commune of Yopougon. In this commune six (6) sellers were chosen because of their availability in the marketing of Koutoukou, including three in the marketing of Koutoukou produced from sweet water and yeast and three for Koutoukou produced with palm wine. For one passage, three 80 mL samples were taken per vendor (one sample from the control, one sample from Koutoukou mixed with roots and one sample from Koutoukou mixed with bark) and packaged in sterile 100 mL bottles, kept in a cooler. containing carboglaces at a temperature of 4°C and sent to the Laboratory of Microbiology and Food Biotechnology of the University of Nangui Abrogoua (UNA). A total of three (3) passages were performed at each vendor and fifty-four (54) samples were taken under the same conditions to be analyzed in the laboratory.

2.5. Biochemical Analysis
2.5.1. Determination of pH and Total Titratable Acidity

The pH of Koutoukou (KTK) samples was determined directly using a pH-meter (pH-meter P 107, CONSORT, Bioblock, France) after calibration with standard buffers. Total titratable acidity was determined by titrating samples against 0.1 M NaOH using 1% phenolphthalein as indicator as described by 11 and expressed as percentage of lactic acid


2.5.2. Measurement of the Refractometric Dry Extract

The Refractometric Dry Extract was determined by 12. A drop of Koutoukou was deposited on the glass of the Model ATAGO POCKET REFRACTOMETER to evaluate the amount of suspended solids. The value of the Dry Extract Refractometer was read with light, at the level of the eyepiece of the apparatus.


2.5.3. Organic Acids and Ethanol Determination

Samples were centrifuged at 4000 rpm for 20 min and supernatants were filtered through a 0.20 mm Millipore membrane filter (Sartorius AG, Goëttingen, Germany) and then stored at -20°C until analysis. Organic acid were determined by High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) as previously described by 13. Analyses were carried out with an ion-exclusion ORH-801 column (300 × 6.5 mm) (Interchrom, France) preceded by a Universal Guard Cartritge-Holder column. The High-Performance Liquid Chromatograph system (LC-6A, Shimadzu Corporation, Japan) was equipped of a Shimadzu LC-6A pump. Column effluents were monitored by a UV detector (SPD-6A, Shimadzu Corporation, Japan) set at 210 nm. The mobile phase (0.004 N H2SO4) used at a low rate of 0.8 ml/min was filtered through a 0.45 mm Millipore membrane filter (Sartorius AG, Goëttingen, Germany). A 20 µl injection volume was used for HPLC samples and the analyses were done in duplicate.The organic acids standards were dissolved in distilled water at concentrations ranging to 0.05 - 0.4 g/l, filtered and injected as the samples. Organic acids were identified and quantified by comparison of their retention times and peak areas with those of standards. Ethanol content was determined by gas chromatographic analyses, carried out using a Shimadzu CG-14A gas chromatograph. Filtered samples (2 µl) were directly injected into the system. The temperature was set at 8°C/min. Injector and detector temperature were 200°C and 250°C, respectively. Helium at 2 kg/cm2 was used as a carrier gas and the external standard method was used for the quantitative determination of ethanol.

2.6. Enumeration of Micro-organisms

The Koutoukou samples were shaken by hand in the stomacher bag and tenfold serial dilutions were prepared and spread-plated for determination of micro-organism counts. After dilutions, enumeration of total aerobic mesophile was carried out using plates of Plate Count Agar (PCA, Difco 0479-17-3; Difco Laboratories, Detroit, MI, USA) which were incubated at 30 °C for 2 days. The research and counting of Staphylococcus aureus was done on Baird Parker agar after one (1) day incubation at 30°C using 14 method. Bacili species were enumerated on plates Mossel agar (AES Laboratoire, COMBOURG France) after incubation at 30°C for 2 days. Sulfito-reductor bacteria were enumerated using tubes of Trypton Sulfite Neomycin agar (Biorad, Marnes-La-Coquette, France) at 37°C for 24-48 h.

2.7. Statistical Analysis

Software R. 3.01, ANOVA method with Duncan's post-hoc test, significance level 5% was used. This software was used to calculate the means and standard deviations of biochemical and microbiological parameters. It was also used to compare the means of the sample parameters and to determine whether the differences observed in the means of the biochemical and microbiological parameters were significant at the 5% significance level. The survey data were processed using IBM SPSS software (statistics 20).

3. Results and Discussion

The survey on Koutoukou (KTK) consumption has set itself the objective not only to know the preference of consumers for the different types and forms of Koutoukou (KTK) but also to evaluate the biochemical and microbiological qualities of these different types and forms of Koutoukou in the commune of Yopougon. In this regard, this study revealed that the proportion of subjects consuming Koutoukou was 92% (Figure 1).

These results are higher than those obtained by 9 which was 52.5%. This high consumption of Koutoukou is thought to be due to the low cost and accessibility of this artisanal liquor compared to industrial alcoholic beverages. The majority (73.9%) of these consumers drink at least one to five glasses a day, mostly in the evenings (22.8%) and mornings (19.6%). The proportion of women (10.9%) who usually drink alcohol is lower than that of men (89.1%) because of women's greater susceptibility to the harmful effects of alcohol 15. However, it should be noted that regular consumption of Koutoukou is higher among single (77.2%) than married (22.8%) women (Figure 2).

In addition, the position of students in this consumption of Koutoukou is consistent with what is usually observed in Côte d'Ivoire 16. Students (47.8%) consume more than artisans (25%), the unemployed (17.4%), civil servants (6.5%) and students (3.3%). Both students and single people with no family responsibilities do not hesitate to use the financial means available for alcohol consumption. Thus, the age group between 25 and 50 years, with 48.9% of declared drinkers, constitutes the most excessive drinkers in the Koutoukou. It is followed by the 15-25 age group, with 42.4% (Figure 2). These proportions are in line with the results obtained by 17 in the United States concerning the consumption of alcoholic beverages. Excessive consumption of Koutoukou by young people is thought to be due to the availability of Koutoukou at a more moderate price compared with industrial alcoholic beverages As well, adolescents aged 5 to 15 years made up the smallest proportion of users. However, this age group is of particular concern because of their greater vulnerability to the adverse effects of alcohol at the body level 18. In addition, this may be at the root of problems in the country such as violence and exposure to new substances such as cigarettes and illicit drugs. However, 23.9 % of users experienced at least one discomfort following Koutoukou consumption. The most common symptoms encountered are headaches, vomiting, stomach aches, and fever. The duration of these symptoms was estimated to last from 1 to more than 3 days. Most of these symptoms lasted one day in 66.66 % of users, but (6) or 28.57 % of patients were hospitalized (Table 1).

These discomforts would be due to the fact that the production of Koutoukou is artisanal and is done in deplorable hygienic conditions. In addition, its production is still based on the use of artisanal materials and the lack of training of producers, which results in high toxicity of the product that can lead to the death of consumers 19. However, consumers (10 peoples) of Koutoukou produced with palm wine are the most exposed to headaches, while consumers (7 peoples) of Koutoukou produced from sugar water and yeast are more exposed to vomiting and headaches (Table 2).

In fact, the contamination of Koutoukou produced with palm wine could be explained by human or animal fecal contamination at the farm site, as well as by the presence of insects attracted by the sugars contained in the palm wine, as observed by 20. In addition, the presence of these symptoms could be evidence of poor hygienic conditions during the collection of palm wine. Microorganisms may be contaminants from the untreated container that is immediately used for the exploitation of palm wine by the harvesters 21. These practices can affect the finished product and cause problems for consumers. On the other hand, discomfort related to the consumption of Koutoukou produced from sugar water and yeast is due to the quality of the water used for fermentation, which could be contaminated.. In addition to the survey, biochemical analyses were carried out on both types of Koutoukou. From this analysis it appears that the Koutoukou produced with palm wine is the most acidic (0.16±0.09%) with a pH of 3.90 ± 0.47 (Table 3). These results are consistent with those of 22, who obtained a titratable acidity content between 0.10 and 0.13% on palm wine distillate in Dogbo, a locality located in Benin. This acidity would be attributed to the lactic acid bacteria present in the palm wine which play the role of rapid acidification during fermentation 23. The low level of titratable acidity (0.04 ± 0.01%) obtained in Koutoukou produced from sugar water and yeast is due to the fact that the raw material of this beverage was sugar and its fermentation was ensured solely by a yeast (Saccharomyces) that produces ethanol and CO2 during alcoholic fermentation 24. As a result, the levels of ethanol (51.36 ± 2.7%) and soluble sugars (10.58 ± 0.6 °Brix) obtained in the Koutoukou produced from sugar water and yeast are much higher than those obtained in the Koutoukou produced from palm wine with (17.68 ± 3.1%) and (8.82 ± 1.05 °Brix) respectively (Table 3). In fact, alcoholic fermentation is carried out by yeasts during which sugars (mainly glucose) are transformed into alcohol (ethanol) 24. Indeed, the variation in the alcohol content of these beverages is related to the raw material, the type of distillate (first, second or third distillate) or to the dilution in water. These artisanal "Koutoukou" products are produced without any measuring and control equipment for the final product 4. Concerning organic acids, two were detected in the two types of beverages analyzed. These were coumarin and caffeic acid. In addition to these two organic acids, hydroquinone was also present in Koutoukou produced with palm wine at a low concentration of 0.07 ± 0.01% (Table 3).

Indeed, during the preparation of Koutoukou, a condensation reaction occurs. In this reaction, activated phenols and ethyl acetoacetate yield polyphenols such as coumarins, hydroquinone, caffeic acid and by-products such as ethanol and water etc 25, 26. These polyphenols could have beneficial effects on the health of the consumer. Indeed, their role as natural antioxidants would arouse more and more interest in the prevention and treatment of cancer, inflammatory, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases 25 especially Coumarin. Koutoukou produced from sugar water and yeast contains more coumarin (0.9 ± 0.04%) than Koutoukou produced with palm wine (0.2 ± 0.01%) (Table 3). It could be said that consumption of Koutoukou produced from sugar water and yeast would have a beneficial effect on the health of the consumer. However, at high doses, phenolic derivatives with anticoagulant properties would be toxic by ingestion 27 and could decree cases of acute cytolytic hepatitis 28. Also these acids heated to decomposition can give off toxic fumes of carbon monoxide and dioxide, especially hydroquinone. Thus its consumption could lead to nervous disorders, eye damage, skin allergies, chest pain, cough, headaches, dizziness, salivation, convulsions, nausea and vomiting 29. Koutoukou produced with palm wine contains a low concentration of 0.07±0.01% hydroquinone. In addition, mixing simple Koutoukou with either roots or bark could alter the microbiological quality of these Koutoukou. Thus, as these beverages were distilled, it was expected that these liquors would be free of microbial contamination as recommended by the WHO 30. However, there are several types of Koutoukou (KTK) depending on the substances (roots, stems, bark, and other ingredients) added to the Koutoukou. These substances are immersed in the drink and are involved in the treatment of several diseases such as malaria, fever, headaches, stomach aches, hemorrhoids, etc. 6. It should be noted that Koutoukou added to roots, stems, bark, and other ingredients could be a medium for the development of microorganisms. Thus, the presence of mesophilic aerobic (AM) including staphylococci and Bacillus was observed in all the beverages analyzed. Koutoukou mixed with bark is most contaminated with mesophilic aerobic loads of (2.5± 0.5). ×102 CFU/mL in Koutoukou produced from sugar water and yeast and (1.7± 0.8) ×102 CFU/mL in Koutoukou produced with palm wine (Table 4).

The contamination of the Koutoukou by these microorganisms after distillation would be due to the fact that these microorganisms would be found in the drums or bottles used to collect the drinks, either on the roots and bark used to mix the drinks, on the hands of the staff, in the water used to dilute the pre-sales drinks and especially in the production environment. The presence of Bacillus and staphylococci in these beverages poses a risk to the consumer. In addition, these microorganisms are producers of heat-resistant toxins and once ingested by humans they can cause gastroenterics, vomiting and often death 31.

4. Conclusion

This study on the consumption of Koutoukou in Yopougon (Abidjan) initially revealed that this alcoholic drink is widely consumed (92% of the respondents). It is mainly consumed by single men aged between 25 and over 50 years. In addition, some consumers claim to be suffering from discomfort such as headaches, vomiting, stomach aches and fever. Secondly, biochemical analysis of the drinks showed that Koutoukou produced with palm wine is more acidic and contains less ethanol than that produced from sugar water and yeast. At the microbiological level, both types of Koutoukou do not comply with WHO recommendations that alcoholic beverages should be free of microorganisms.

Acknowledgements

The authors gratefully acknowledge M. Joel BONOUMAN for his assistance in HLPC and CG analysis.

Funding

The author(s) received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.

Conflict of Interest

Authors have no conflict of interest regarding the publication of paper.

Authors Contribution

All authors have contributed equally during the manuscript preparation.

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Consumer survey sheet

A survey form was developed and used to conduct surveys on the consumption of Koutoukou in the city of Abidjan, particularly in the commune of Yopougon (District where this drink is more widely consumed in Côte d'Ivoire). The questionnaire is composed of 3 parts. The first part focused on the level of knowledge of the Koutoukou, the second part on the profile of consumers and the last part on the discomforts related to the consumption of the Koutoukou

Published with license by Science and Education Publishing, Copyright © 2021 Koffi Maïzan Jean-Paul BOUATENIN, Fatoumata CAMARA, Wahauwouélé Hermann COULIBALY, Alfred Kohi KOUAME, Richard N’Goran KOUADIO and Koffi Marcellin DJE

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Cite this article:

Normal Style
Koffi Maïzan Jean-Paul BOUATENIN, Fatoumata CAMARA, Wahauwouélé Hermann COULIBALY, Alfred Kohi KOUAME, Richard N’Goran KOUADIO, Koffi Marcellin DJE. Risks Related to the Consumption a Traditional Drink (Koutoukou) Obtained by Distillation of Palm Wine or Sucrose. American Journal of Microbiological Research. Vol. 9, No. 2, 2021, pp 54-61. http://pubs.sciepub.com/ajmr/9/2/4
MLA Style
BOUATENIN, Koffi Maïzan Jean-Paul, et al. "Risks Related to the Consumption a Traditional Drink (Koutoukou) Obtained by Distillation of Palm Wine or Sucrose." American Journal of Microbiological Research 9.2 (2021): 54-61.
APA Style
BOUATENIN, K. M. J. , CAMARA, F. , COULIBALY, W. H. , KOUAME, A. K. , KOUADIO, R. N. , & DJE, K. M. (2021). Risks Related to the Consumption a Traditional Drink (Koutoukou) Obtained by Distillation of Palm Wine or Sucrose. American Journal of Microbiological Research, 9(2), 54-61.
Chicago Style
BOUATENIN, Koffi Maïzan Jean-Paul, Fatoumata CAMARA, Wahauwouélé Hermann COULIBALY, Alfred Kohi KOUAME, Richard N’Goran KOUADIO, and Koffi Marcellin DJE. "Risks Related to the Consumption a Traditional Drink (Koutoukou) Obtained by Distillation of Palm Wine or Sucrose." American Journal of Microbiological Research 9, no. 2 (2021): 54-61.
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