Metal and nutrient composition of processed cattle hide (Welle) using four procedures

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This study was carried out to determine the concentrations of essential and some heavy metals (Fe, Mn, Cu, Zn, Pb and Cd) in dehaired cattle hides ‘Welle’ processed by means of fermentation, firewood, scrap motor tyre and liquefied petroleum gas ( LPG) as fuel for singeing. The nutrient composition (crude protein, ether extract and ash) of ‘welle’ was also evaluated. The concentrations of the metals were measured by atomic absorption spectrophotometry (AAS) and reported as mg/kg dry weight of dehaired cattle hides. The levels of heavy metals in the fermented and singed samples (wood, tyre and LPG) ranged from 73.13 to 264.14 mg/kg Fe; 5.84 to 40.04 mg/kg Mn; 0.19 to 20.31 mg/kg Cu; 3.29 to 35.31 mg/kg Zn; <0.001 mg/kg Pb; and <0.002 mg/kg Cd. Generally, the fermented treatments recorded the highest significant levels (p<0.05) of metals compared to the singed treatments. Cu slightly exceeded the maximum permissible limit (MPL) in the fermented, washed and boiled samples. . There were also significant differences (p<0.05) among the fermented washed and boiled, wood-singed washed and boiled, tyre-singed washed and boiled, and LPG- singed washed and boiled samples with respect to their metal contents. The singed samples were relatively high in their contents of Fe with moderate amounts of Zn, Mn and Cu. However, the concentrations of Fe and Mn in this study cannot be described as contaminants as there is no MPL fixed for them in animal food sources. The contents of Pb and Cd were below detectable limits Processing methods significantly (p<0.05) influenced the crude protein (CP), ether extract (EE) and ash contents of ‘welle’. Crude protein values for fermentation (93.60), tyre (92.03) and wood (90.37) were significantly (p<0.05) different from liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) (85.6O). There was also significant (p<0.05) difference in ash values between fermented (1.67), LPG (1.17), and wood-singed ‘welle’ With respect to EE values there were significant difference among all treatment means. The LPG-singed “welle” recorded the highest value of 11.67 followed by wood (7.17), tyre (4.67) and fermentation (4.0).  
A thesis submitted to the Board of Postgraduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of the Degree of Master of Science in Meat Science.