APPLICATION OF UV-C AND BIO-CONTROL AGENT STRATEGIES TO CONTROL ROT OF FRUIT AND VEGETABLES

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  • 1 George Washington Carver Agricultural Experiment Station, Tuskegee University, Tuskegee Institute, AL 36088
  • | 2 U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, NAA Appalachian Fruit Research Station, Kearneyville, WV 25430
  • | 3 U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Southeastern Fruit and Tree Nut Research Laboratory, Byron, GA 31008
  • | 4 George Washington Carver Agricultural Experiment Station, Tuskegee University, Tuskegee Institute, AL 36088
  • | 5 Volcani Center, Bet Dagan, Israel

Applying low doses of ultraviolet light (254 nm, W-C) reduces the incidence of brown rot of (Monilinia fructicola) peaches, green mold (Penicillium digitatum) of tangerines, and Rhizopus soft rot (Rhizopus stolonifer) of tomatoes and sweetpotatoes resulting from field infection and artificial inoculation. In most studies, applying postharvest fungicide (PF) was better than W-C treatment. In this study, the effectiveness of combining a biocontrol agent, Debaryomyces hansenii (BC), with low UV-C dose for postharvest disease control was investigated. When these commodities were treated with BC 3 days after W-C treatment, the reduction of storage rots was more effective than when UV-C was used alone. For example, the percent brown rot infection of artificially inoculated Elberta peaches 36 hours after inoculation of the nontreated control, peaches treated with UV-C, BC, W-C + BC, and benlate were 100%, 55%, 67%, 12%, and 12%, respectively. The efficacy of W-C + BC was similar to when PF was used alone, indicating that an integration of UV-C treatment and BC can reduce storage rot to the levels of commercial PF treatment.

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