Physicochemical Properties of Sachet Water

Physicochemical Properties of Sachet Water (Biochemistry Project Topics)


The investigation carried out on the physicochemical analysis of sachet water sold in Aba were conducted from January to February 2012 on these water samples (DINS, FAMBUS and GRAMCO). Their individual temperature varied from the range of (24.00 to 25.60)0C against (15.28)0C of WHO standard. Their pH were within the range of (6.90 to 7.60) against (7.00, 8.50). Their total hardness were far below standard from the range g2 940.00 to 44.00mgl) against (200.00). Their calcium were within the range of (30.00 to 32.00) against 975.00). Magnesium hardness (8.00 to 16.00), Total alkalinity (16.00 to 19.00), dissolved oxygen demand (12.00 to 18.30), Biochemical oxygen demand (8.95 to 10.50), Chemical oxygen demand (2.00 to 4.00). Their nitrate ranges from )0.0026 to 0.0030) against (10) sulphate were within the range of (0.20 to 0.05), chloride (9.20 to 11.00), phosphate (0.0003 to 0.0025). The other result obtained were the microbial assessment of the three water samples and it shows that in Table 3.2 MacConkey agar was used as an isolation medium and the following test colonial morphology, cell shape, catalase, coagulase was negative in NINS and GRAMCO water but for FAMBUS water the test was positive for catalase, the cell shape was rod like in shape, its colonial morphology shows small pink colour, Escherichia coli was observed as probable organism but was negative for coagulase test. ie in FAMBUS water.



Water is a clear, colorless, tasteless and odorless liquid that is essential for life. Water is among the natural resources that occupies 708 of the earth surface (Willy et al, 2008). The human body needs about three to four litres of water per day for its normal functions. Apart form drinking and body functions, man needs water for various purposes including for use in transportation, recreation, water disposal, hydroelectric system (Onyeagba and Isu 2009).

Water is a good solvent and is often referred to as the universal solvent. It is transparent in the visible electromagnetic spectrum. Aquatic plants can live in water because sunlight can reach them. Ultra-violent and infrared light is strongly absorbed. Chemically, water is made up of two moles of hydrogen and one mole of oxygen in the ratio 2:1 the boiling point of water (and all other liquids) is dependent on the barometric pressure. For example, at the top of mount. Everest water boils at 680C (1540F) compared to 1000C (2120F) at the sea level conversely, water deep in the ocean near geothermal vets can reach temperature of hand reds or degrees and remains liquid.

Water has the second highest molar specific of any known substance, after ammonia, as well as high heat of vaporization (40.65KJ mol-1). Both of which are a result of the extensive hydrogen bonding between its molecules these two unusual by buffering large fluctuation in temperature. Water plays a critical role in regulating body temperature, it carries nutrients throughout the body, it improves digestion, it eliminates waste and toxins from the body.

The total amount of water in the body of an average adult is 37 litres, human brains are 75% water, human bones are 25% water, human blood is 83% water. Water needs to be continuously replaced since, on average, 250ml is lost on a daily basis through breathing alone. By drinking an adequate amount of water each day at least 8 glasses/ 2 litres, you can ensure that your body has all it needs to maintain good health, of course, your fluid needs might be double or even triple that amount when you work out for more than an hour in the heart.

Water suppresses the appetite naturally and helps the body metabolize stored fat. Incredible as it may seem, water is quite possible the single. Most important catalyst in losing weight and keeping it off. Studies have shown that a decrease in water intake will cause fat deposits to increase, while an increase in water intake can actually reduce fat deposits.

The kidneys can’t function properly without enough water. When they don’t work to capacity, some of their load is dumped onto the liver. One of the liver’s primary functions is to metabolize stored fat into usually energy for the body. Water can help relieve constipation, when the body gets too little water, it siphons what it needs from internal sources which the colon is one primary functions. But when a person drinks enough water normal bowel function usually returns.

In order of importance, air, water and food are the three main’s necessities of life. A person can survive fro a mouth without food, about a week, without water and less than five minutes without air. The provision of an adequate supply of safe drinking water was of the eight components of primary health care 1918. Increase in human population have exerted an enormous pressure on the provision of safe drinking water especially in areas of developing.

Countries in the ear of colonialism in Nigeria. Water was supplied to the public free by the government. But Nigeria has moved form a mixed to capitalist economy. In cities and towns today, water now attracts rates and fees with insufficient governments supply private sector participation has evolved and the idea of packaged drinking water popularly referred as “pure water” is now a common phenomenon in eh country.

Drinking water is now commercially packed in easy to open 50-60ml polyethene sacs and is referred to as “sachet water”. This packed water is cheap and convent and have increasingly become popular. Arising from the abuse of its production leading to a situation whereby the pure. Although there is death of documentation of data in incidence rate. It has been widely observed that the advent of pure water has significantly increase the case of samonelosis and typhoid fever in recent years.

Water pollution has continue to generate unpleasant implication. For health and economic development in Nigeria (Adelegan 2004). There are several files and regulations for drinking water. In Nigeria, such regulations are monitored by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) which was established by decree No. 15 of 1993 surveillance carried out by NAFDAC between 2004 and 2005 revealed that some producers of packed water indulge in share practices such as a packaging of untreated water, production under unhygienic conditions, illegal production of unregistered water in unapproved premises, use of non-food grade sachets and release of packed water for distribution and sale without data masking, these malpractices completed the agency to formulate guidelines for the production of wholesome packaged water.

However, deposit the policies formulated by public and internal agencies to address this problems, the situation in Nigeria seems degenerating and therefore demands increase attention in order to effectively solve the problem. However; there is need to fully asses the extent of the problem and it causes. Drinking water regulation require that potable water on human consumption be free from human diseases. Causing bacterial and specific of these pathogenic (Listw 1993). This does not mean that drinking water should be sterile, some bacterial are classified as pathogens. Examples of bacterial pathogens and their related diseases (dysenteric) and legionella pneumophila (legconneaire’s disease) this study was therefore aimed at investigating the incidence of pathogenic organisms in sachet packed drinking water sold in Aba, Abia State.

For studies (Olayemi, 2007; Adekunle et al, 2003; Asheye et al; 2001; Gyang et al; 2008) have been conducted in recent years on the quality of packaged water in Nigeria. These focused primarily on the end-product, leaving out the processes that determine the final rate of the package water, as well as the people (various stakeholders involved) in whose hands the will power to effect the desire changes consequently, practicable recommendations aimed at changing the status-quo have not yet emerged. This study set out to ascertain the bacteriological quality of the water in sachets, to identify contributory factors that determine the fate of the packaged water product as it moves form catchment to consumers, and to highlight unharnessed opportunities for policy improvement that would allow for sustained and improved regulation of the sachet water industry.



The biological assessment of water bodies has helped a lot in relating the presence and the concentration of certain minerals and ions to the condition of the water. This research has been embarked upon by many researchers both corporate and individuals and has till date succeeded in providing the bases for acceptance and resulting of certain water sources. These works have all been polished and there is now a strong belief that the degree perfection of a particular water is relative, considering its context of purposes. These standards depends on the properties of the water which automatically affects mineral concentration. These properties or characteristics can be physical or chemical.


pH: This is described as the general measure of the acidity or alkalinity of the water sample. The pH of water on a scale of 0 to 14, is a measure of the hydrogen ion concentration, water contains both ions and OH ins. Pure distilled water contains equal number of H and OH ions and is considered to be natural (pH7), neither basic nor acidic (Mitihell et al 2007). Acidity measures the amount of base required to neutralize a given sample to a specific point, this certainly changes the quality of the water (APHA, 1999). Alkalinity is due to the presence of carbonates (CO32-) and bicarbonates (HCO3), (Frederic et al 2006). The level of alkalinity of water depends on the location of the sample sources. Rain water can be used to determine the solubility of chemical form of most substances, for example, hydroxides of many metals are insoluble, therefore the higher the pH, the less metal available in water (Frank, 2005). It has been noted that alkaline water are noted that alkaline water are not typical of Africa (Holden et al 2006). The pH may be determined by either electronic or calorimetric methods. The glass electrode H, meter is the most widely used method and it is quick and accurate. The color of the solution does not affect results, but accurate figures cannot be obtained if the water is oily.


Temperature is significant because biochemical reactions eg. uptake of oxygen by bacterial proceed more rapidly at a high temperature. Temperature also affect the solubility of oxygen in water, with less oxygen available for aquatic life at higher temperatures. This means that aquatic life is more vulnerable during the summer period when the flows are low and water temperature are high. Elevated temperatures can occur where thermal discharges form power stations and this can lead to thermal pollution.


Turbidity may be used as an estimate of undissolved substances in the sample. It may be measured by visual comparison with the standards or photo-metrically using spectrophotometer (standard methods for examination of waters and waste waters 1999). Water turbidity is as a result of the pressure of suspended) material which could be organic in that water. The materials include industrial waters, agricultural wastes, microbial growth, erosion products, presence of human organs inputs.


Conductivity is a measure of the amount of material dissolved in water. Conductivity generally increases over the length of a river but an unusual increase in conductivity can indicate the presence of polluting water. Conductivity is the reciprocal of the resistance offered by a solution with platinum electrode immersed in it each 1cm square, 11cm apart. It is usually denoted by the symbol K and defined by the geometry of the cell and RI the resistance in ohms. I is now a standard practice to express Nmho/cm. Sometimes the result will be shown as Ns. Conductivity varies with temperature and also with the nature of the ions and their concentration in the sample. Tests have shown that near neutrality, the effect of different ions at the same equivalent can give a raid and useful indication of the total ionic strength of water samples. Measurements are generally carried out using a conductivity meter at either 200C or 2500C. Values for natural water generally fall between the range of 85-120NSCM-1.



Total hardness in natural water are mainly due to the presence of calcium and magnesium salts and bicarbonate formed by reactions in the soil and rock through which the water percolates. Water with low alkalinity or hardness may be susceptible to pH reduction by “acid rain”, these can prevent the immediate formation of lather with soap and the formation of scale in pipes and fittings of hot water systems (Alpha 1999, Tebbutt 2002). Hard water can be softened on a larger scale by adding just enough line to precipitate the calcium as carbonate to remove the calcium salt.


Nitrates: Nitrates is one of the inorganic nutrients in water it occurs as nitrate in water. Nitrate is known to be an important plant nutrient, thus it is used often as a fertilizer and is found in high concentration rare exceed 10mgll and are frequency less than 1mgll especially during periods of high primary production. Elevated concentrations in indicative of the influences of man such the use of nitrate fertilizer, septic tank failure and the vulnerability of the aquifer to infiltration be surface drainage. High level of nitrate greater than 20mglc may heat hazard to juvenile mammals (Lind, 2004). Nitrate level have been shown to be at the range of 0.4 – 0.55mglc in Africa water (Holden, 1960). Most sachet water in Nigeria, Aba to be precise have a nitrate range of 0.002 – 0.003mglc.

Nitrate is the reduced form of nitrite. This is common digestive systems. Nitrate is known to attack hemoglobin, producing methamoglobin this form of complex losses its oxygen carrying capacity in the red blood cell. The nitrate can come from nitrate drinking water or from food.

Phosphorus is usually present in water as phosphate. They are usually formed when metallic atoms replace. Some or all of the hydrogen in phosphoric acid. This is usually in small amount, except when there has been human course enrichment of water. (Dugan et al, 2004). The main sources of phosphates in ground water and surface water include fertilizers, sewage, detergents and rain water which enter the centre mainly as a result of surface runoff and blank erosion. The amount of phosphates that water can hold without becoming polluted varies in a stream draining into a lake, the phosphates should not exceed 0.025mgll. A stream not flowing into a lake should not exceed 0.025mgll, excess phosphate concentration can lead to eutrophication process, by inner algal growth. Generally the water lower the total phosphates value of water, the better. Total phosphorus includes organic phosphates. While organic phosphates comprise the ions bonded to soil practices, and those present in laundry detergents (polyphosphates) (Parreira, 2005).

Rocks and many other geological land marks have also proved to be very good sources of some element that are of great marine and aquatic values. These rocks formed as a result of sedimentation of carcasses of organisms over a long period of time and through the deposition of molten margin which on its own house these elements.

Calcium (Ca) is known to be present in water as a result of some runoff from these rocks. Such rock as limestone, gypsum and dolomite, provide a very high concentration of calcium, to water bodies. These concentration ranges from 40.00mgll (Lind, 2003). It known to have a very high aquatic productivity. Such as bone tissues in fishes and nollus shells and also function in bone calcification in humans. It is very important in bone maintenance (David, et al, 2000) and also in regulation of nerve and muscle function (Robert, et al 2003).

Magnesium (Mg) which is mostly produced from runoff from igneous and carbonate rocks. It is very important in water hardness, just as calcium. It is important as a nutrient in plants where it aids growth and production of some porphyrings eg. Chlorophyll (Wetzel et al 2004, David et al 2005). It also has a very important function in humans where it is involved as constituents of bones, teeth; and also acts as an enzymes co-factor (Robert, et al 205).


Sodium is another important element which is also a macronutrient. It is found in high concentration in igneous rocks and in Africa water (Gaudet, et al 206). In humans, it is the principal cation in extra cellular fluid; regulates plasma volume, acid base balance, nerve and muscle function etc. (Robert, et al 2006). It has a very low concentration in sachet water in Aba.


The aim of this project was to access the physicochemical properties of sachet water sold in Aba, Abia State.

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