(1) Influence of Storage Temperature and Time in Storage on Pigment Content of Potato (Solanum tuberosum L.)

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  • 1 1Colorado State University, Department of Horticulture & Landscape Architecture, Colorado Fort Collins, Colorado, 80523-1173
  • | 2 2Colorado State University, San Luis Valley Research Center, Center, Colorado, 81125

The influence of storage temperature and length of time in storage on anthocyanin tuber concentration were investigated in seven potato genotypes. These genotypes were cultivars `All Blue' and `Yukon Gold' plus five selections that were various skin/flesh color types of red/red, purple/purple, white/yellow, and two red/yellow types. The red, blue, and purple colors are the result of various anthocyanin compounds. Tubers of the seven genotypes were stored at 4.4 or 10 °C for 0, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 16, 20, or 24 weeks. Both fresh and freeze-dried samples of the tubers were evaluated for each temperature and time treatment combination. Extractable anthocyanins were found in only the three pigmented genotypes red/red, purple/purple, and `All Blue'. Anthocyanin concentrations were estimated spectrophotometrically with a Molecular Devices Spectramax 384, based upon extinction coefficients reported in the literature for purple and red pigmented potatoes. Anthocyanin concentration increased in storage as time in storage increased for both fresh and freeze-dried samples. Tubers stored at the cooler temperature (4.4 °C) had higher levels of anthocyanin than those tubers stored at the higher temperature (10 °C). Increased levels of anthocyanins in cold-stored tubers may be linked to the conversion of starch to sugar (so called cold sweetening) known to occur at cold storage temperatures. Pigment extraction was more efficient from freeze-dried tuber samples compared to fresh tuber samples. There was, however, a similar increasing trend in both freeze-dried and fresh tuber sources with storage duration.

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