Abstract: Fruits make important diet for human beings. However, the high concentration of various sugars, minerals, vitamins and amino acids also provide a good platform for the successful growth and survival of various parasitic and saprophytic forms of fungi. Considering the importance of fungi in deterioration of fruits and in causing huge losses, the present study was undertaken to understand different fungi isolated from common fruits available in markets of Nagpur city namely Citrus limon, Citrus sinensis, Pyrus communis, Carissa carandas, Averrhoa carambola, Prunus domestica, Malus domestica and Punica granatum. Fungi were isolated on sterile potato Dextrose Agar and identified on the basis of published literature. Aspergillus niger was having highest frequency of occurrence followed by Fusarium spp. for most of the fruits. Maximum diversity of fungi was seen for Carissa carandas with 8 fungal species followed by Pyrus communis and Prunus domestica with 5 species each. The known potential of isolated species for the mycotoxin production carries significance as contaminated fruits are often consumed in developing countries. Results of the study will help to spread awareness amongst the farmers and those involved in the storage, transport and marketing of the fruits about the need for prevention of storage fungi growth.
Keywords: fruits, fungi, mycotoxins, storage