Postharvest Physiology and Quality of Cilantro (Coriandrum sativum L.)

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  • 1 Department of Vegetable Crops, University of California, Davis, CA 95616

Respiration rates of freshly harvested cilantro were moderately high (CO2 at 15 to 20 μL·g-1·h-1) and ethylene production rates were low (<0.2 nL·g-1·h-1) at 5 °C and were typical of green leafy tissues. Cilantro stored in darkness at a range of temperatures in air or controlled atmospheres was evaluated periodically for visual quality, decay, aroma, off-odor, color, and chlorophyll content. Cilantro stored in air at 0 °C had good visual quality for 18 to 22 days, while at 5 and 7.5 °C good quality was maintained for about 14 and 7 days, respectively. An atmosphere of air plus 5% or 9% CO2 extended the shelf-life of cilantro stored at 7.5 °C to about 14 days. Quality of cilantro stored in 3% O2plus CO2 was similar to that stored in air plus CO2. Atmospheres enriched with 9% to 10% CO2 caused dark lesions after 18 days; 20% CO2 caused severe injury after 7 days. Although visual quality could be maintained for up to 22 days, typical cilantro aroma decreased notably after 14 days, regardless of storage conditions.

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