Knowledge, attitudes and practices of bushera producers towards the physiochemical attributes and packaging of bushera.
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The purpose of this research study was to assess the knowledge, attitudes and practices of Bushera processors towards the physicochemical attributes of Bushera and its packaging. This was achieved by use of questionnaires and a snowball approach was utilized to easily reach the producers of Bushera. 50 samples of ready to drink bushera were also collected frombushera producers of the five divisions that make up Kampala city and taken in the laboratories for analysis of pH, Total titratable acidity and Total soluble solids at the department of Food technology, nutrition and Biosystems engineering. Standard chemical methods were used to determine the physicochemical properties of bushera. The pH of all the four types of bushera; Obuteire, Enturire, Obutoko and Ekitiribita varied between 3.19±0.67(Obuteire) and 4.72±0.03(Obuteire). Total titratable acidity ranged between 3.19±0.67(Obuteire) and 4.72±0.03(Obuteire). The total soluble solids varied between 2.1±0.140Brix(Obuteire) and 13.3±0.140Brix (Obutoko). The variations in Physicochemical properties can be attributed to different raw materials used, difference in bushera production techniques by various processors, the number of days of fermentation before samples were collected among others. There were only two samples that met the standards for packaging and labeling. Only eight samples partially met the standard with the rest (80%) of the samples failing to conform to the expected requirement of US EAS 38 which is the general standard for labeling of prepackaged foods. The non-conformance to the standard is as a result of lack of knowledge on packaging and labeling and lack of inspection by authorities as discovered from the survey. Therefore more efforts should be geared towards teaching bushera processors on GMP’s, packaging and labeling as a way of ensuring bushera safety and quality. Key words; Bushera, pH, Total titratable acidity, Total soluble solids, Packaging and labeling.