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Influence of Oxygen and Temperature on the Respiration Rate of Fresh-cut Cantaloupe and Implications for Modified Atmosphere Packaging

Authors:
M. Helena GomesCBQF, Escola Superior de Biotecnologia do Porto, Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Rua Dr. António Bernardino de Almeida, 4200-072 Porto, Portugal

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Randolph M. BeaudryDepartment of Horticulture, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-1325

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Domingos P.F. AlmeidaCBQF, Escola Superior de Biotecnologia do Porto, Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Rua Dr. António Bernardino de Almeida, 4200-072 Porto, Portugal; and Faculdade de Ciê ncias, Universidade do Porto, Rua Campo Alegre, 687, 4169-007 Porto, Portugal

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Abstract

The respiratory behavior of fresh-cut melon under modified atmosphere packaging at various temperatures was characterized to assess the potential for shelf life extension through low-oxygen and to generate information for the development of appropriate packaging conditions. Cantaloupe melon (Cucumis melo var. cantalupensis ‘Olympic Gold’) cubes were packaged and stored at 0, 5, 10, and 15 °C. Packages attained gas equilibrium after 5 days at 10 °C, 6 days at 5 °C, and 10 days at 0 °C. In cubes stored at 15 °C, decay started before steady-state gas levels were reached. Respiration rates were measured and respiratory quotient calculated once steady-state O2 and CO2 partial pressures were achieved inside the packages. O2 uptake increased with temperature and O2 partial pressure (pO2 pkg), according to a Michaelis-Menten kinetics described by = [( × pO2 pkg)/( + pO2 pkg)]. Respiratory parameters were modeled as an exponential function of temperature: = {[1.34 × 10−17 × e(0.131 × T) × pO2 pkg]/[1.15 × 10−24 × e(0.193 × T) + pO2 pkg]} (R2 = 0.95), Q10 = 3.7, and Ea = 84 kJ·mol−1. A good fit to the experimental data was also obtained considering as constant: RO2 = {[4.36 × 10−14 × e(0.102 × T) × pO2 pkg]/[0.358 + pO2 pkg]} (R2 = 0.93), Q10 = 2.8, and Ea = 66 kJ·mol−1. These results provide fundamental information to predict package permeability and steady-state pO2 pkg required to prevent anaerobic conditions and maximize shelf life of fresh-cut cantaloupe. The kinetics of respiration as a function of pO2 suggests that no significant reductions in respiration rate of fresh-cut cantaloupe can be achieved by lowering O2 levels.

Melons are large fruit whose preparation requires slicing and disposal of the rind and seeds. Therefore, convenience of consumption is valued in this fruit and, not surprisingly, fresh-cut melons account for a major part of the growing fresh-cut fruit market (Offner, 2011). Fresh-cut processing invariably involves tissue wounding with the concomitant healing response. Wound response in plant tissues is mediated by ethylene and often involves increased respiration. Enhancement of respiration rate after cutting of cantaloupe mesocarp has been documented (McGlasson and Pratt, 1964), although the steady-state respiration rates of cut melon pieces can be similar to those of whole fruit under refrigeration (Aguayo et al., 2004; Watada et al., 1996).

Respiration rates have been reported for fresh-cut melons (cantaloupe and other cultivar groups) at various temperatures (Aguayo et al., 2004; Gorny, 1998; Watada et al., 1996) and were predicted under non-equilibrium gas concentrations for an inodorus-type melon (‘Piel de Sapo’) stored at 4 °C with initial oxygen partial pressures of 2.5, 21, and 70 kPa (Oms-Oliu et al., 2008). During the first 10 d of storage at 4 °C, the respiration rates of cut ‘Piel de Sapo’ ranged from 0.13 mmol CO2/kg/h to 0.83 mmol CO2/kg/h (Oms-Oliu et al., 2008), values similar to those reported by Gorny (1998). For the same storage period at 5 °C, Aguayo et al. (2004) measured respiration rates of 0.16 to 0.25 mmol CO2/kg/h for cantaloupe and inodorus melons, values 1.5 to two times higher than those obtained at 0 °C.

Modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) often complements refrigeration as an additional hurdle to help maintain the quality and food safety of fresh-cut fruit. The practical benefits of MAP are considered relevant for fresh-cut cantaloupe with favorable gas partial pressures ranging from 3 to 5 kPa O2 and 6 to 15 kPa CO2 (Gorny, 1998). Recommended gas compositions for MAP of fresh-cut produce in general and fresh-cut melon in particular have been established based on few published references (Gorny, 1998) and on experiments with a limited number of combinations of O2 and CO2 concentrations (Bai et al., 2001; Oms-Oliu et al., 2007). Optimal packaging geometry and film permeability to achieve the target gas levels can be deducted from the respiration rates (Jacxsens et al., 2000; Lakakul et al., 1999). However, despite the benefits observed in the few reports on MAP of fresh-cut melon (Bai et al., 2001, 2003; Oms-Oliu et al., 2007, 2008), an observation of the European and American markets for fresh-cut melon reveals that most operators do not aim at optimizing gas compositions inside the packages given that anaerobiosis is prevented. The discrepancy between the potential benefits of optimal MAP reported in the literature and the apparent lack of adoption of this knowledge by the industry may be the result of deficient knowledge transfer. Alternatively, the putative benefits of optimal MAP in fresh-cut melon fail to materialize in actual supply chains, and the efforts to achieve optimal MAP conditions have little or no economic benefit. Physiological limitations to the reduction of respiration rate by MAP must also be considered.

The reduction in respiration by MAP depends on the kinetics of the respiration rate as a function of oxygen partial pressure at given temperatures. In whole fruit, significant differences in the kinetic parameters are found among species (Beaudry, 2000; Hertog et al., 1999). Postharvest treatment of apple with the ethylene action inhibitor 1-methylcyclopropene, inducing changes in the ripening stage, significantly alters the kinetic parameters of respiration as a function of O2 substrate (Beaudry, 2000). The kinetics of respiration vs. oxygen concentration in fresh-cut ‘Rocha’ pear suggests that no significant reduction in respiration rate can be achieved through MAP (Gomes et al., 2010); consistent with this physiological limitation, no significant improvement of metabolism-dependent quality attributes was observed in fresh-cut pear under various MAP conditions (Gomes et al., unpublished data). Therefore, the fundamental knowledge of respiratory parameters as affected by O2 partial pressure is essential to establish the physiological limits of the tissue, to predict the benefits of low oxygen, and, eventually, to design packages aimed at targeted atmosphere conditions.

The objective of this study was to determine the effect of steady-state oxygen concentration on the respiration kinetics of fresh-cut cantaloupe at various temperatures, to provide detailed information to predict the benefits of MAP, and to assist in the design of adequate packages for this convenient product.

Materials and Methods

Plant material and processing conditions.

Orange-fleshed cantaloupe melon (Cucumis melo L. subsp. melo var. cantalupensis Naudin ‘Olympic Gold’) fruit grown by Del Monte Fresh Produce Co. in Arizona were harvested in Nov. 2007, purchased from a broker in East Lansing, MI, and stored at 3 °C for a maximum of 48 h before use. Fruits (n = 14 to 26 per temperature treatment) with an average weight of 2.5 ± 0.2 kg and 11.7 ± 1.5% (w/w) soluble solids were used in the experiments. Whole fruit were rinsed with tap water, sanitized with 150 μL·L−1 NaClO for 2 min, and air-dried. The rind was removed by hand with a sharp knife and the flesh was cut into trapezoidal sections ≈2 × 2.5 cm wide.

Packaging and storage conditions.

Melon pieces were placed in vented polyethylene terephthalate clamshells (Monte Package Company, Riverside, MI) of 13.0 × 11.1 × 6.7 cm that were inserted into low-density polyethylene (Dow Chemical Company, Midland, MI) pouches (18.5 × 19.0 cm or 18.5 × 19.5 cm), which were hermetically sealed using a heat sealer. Several combinations (n = 12 per temperature treatment) of film surface area and film thickness, and a range of fruit masses varying from 0.04 to 0.36 kg per pouch, were used to assure a wide series of steady-state gas concentrations within the packages. The film thickness used in the experiments ranged from 28.1 × 10−4 to 77.7 × 10−4 cm. Film permeabilities to O2 and CO2 (Table 1) were calculated with the predicting equations PO2 = 0.067 × e(–4423/T) and PCO2 = 0.118 × e(–4153/T) derived from the diffusion rate of gases of known concentrations through the film inserted into a permeability cell and the Arrhenius model to account for the effect of temperature on permeability (Gomes et al., 2010). Three replicates of each of the 12 combination of film thickness, film area, and fruit mass were stored at 0, 5, 10, and 15 °C.

Table 1.

Film permeability to O2 and CO2 at various temperatures.

Table 1.

Determination of respiration rate.

The gas composition of the headspace in individual packages was monitored daily until steady-state was reached. Gas (100 μL) was withdrawn from packages through a silicon sampling septum (Gomes et al., 2010). Gases were measured using a paramagnetic O2 detector (Series 1100; Servomex Co., Sussex, U.K.) and an infrared CO2 detector (ADC 255-MK3; Analytical Development Co., Hoddesdon, U.K.) connected in series. Rates of O2 uptake () and CO2 () production were calculated from Eq. [1] and Eq. [2] using steady-state O2 and CO2 partial pressures, package permeability, and fruit weight (Beaudry et al., 1992; Lakakul et al., 1999). Respiratory quotients () for aerobic respiration were computed from the calculated respiration rates.
DE1
DE2
where and are respiration rates (mmol·kg−1·h−1) for O2 and CO2, and are the O2 and CO2 permeabilities (mmol·cm·cm−2·h−1·kPa−1), A is the film area (cm2), l is the film thickness (cm), pO2 atm, pO2 pkg, pCO2 atm, and pCO2 pkg are O2 and CO2 partial pressure (kPa) outside (atm) and inside (pkg) the package, and M is the fruit mass (kg).

Experimental data modeling.

Respiration rate () was described as a function of O2 partial pressure by a Michaelis-Menten model [Eq. (3)] as described by Lee et al. (1991).
DE3
where is the maximal rate of (mmol·kg−1·h−1), pO2 pkg is the oxygen partial pressure inside packages (kPa), and is pO2 pkg at half the value of (kPa).

The Michaelis-Menten model was fitted to the data from temperatures between 0 and 10 °C (n = 66) but not at 15 °C because fruit started to decay before reaching steady-state. The maximal respiration rate was found to be an exponential function of temperature [ = a × e (b × T)], and the Michaelis-Menten constant was modeled as either an exponential function of temperature [ = q × e (r × T)] or a constant (Table 2). Parameter estimates (a, b, q, and r) were obtained by non-linear regression using the Levenberg-Marquardt method. The model predictions of respiratory parameters (Table 2) were computed at 0, 5, and 10 °C and were used to calculate activation energies through an Arrhenius plot (Gomes et al., 2010) and the temperature coefficient (Q10).

Table 2.

Best estimates of and for fresh-cut cantaloupe melon as a function of temperature (K) and corresponding model accuracies.

Table 2.

Accuracy of the parameter estimates was calculated as the ratio between se and estimated value. Differences between the simulated and the experimental results were ascertained by the root mean square error (RMSE) (Yang and Chinnan, 1988). All statistical analyses were performed using the software package SPSS for Windows Version 16.0 (SPSS, Chicago, IL).

Results and Discussion

Effect of oxygen concentration and temperature on respiration rate.

Packages with fresh-cut melon attained gas equilibrium after 5 d at 10 °C, 6 d at 5 °C, and 10 d at 0 °C, but steady-state was not reached at 15 °C because the tissue started to decay. Experimentally determined respiration rates ( and ) between 0.1 and 16.2 kPa O2 (Table 3) are within the range reported in the literature for fresh-cut cantaloupe (Aguayo et al., 2004; Gorny, 1998). The reported respiration rates of fresh-cut cantaloupe melon are 0.09 to 0.36, 0.13 to 0.71, 0.27, and 1.34 mmol CO2/kg/h at 0, 5, 10, and 20 °C, respectively (Gorny, 1998).

Table 3.

Experimental rates of O2 uptake and CO2 production, respiratory quotient and fermentation threshold for packaged fresh-cut cantaloupe melon stored at various temperatures.

Table 3.

RQ of fresh-cut cantaloupe melon stored at various temperatures ranged from 1.6 at 0 °C to 3.1 at 15 °C (Table 3; Fig. 1). The RQ values observed are higher than the theoretical value of 1.3 for the oxidation of organic acids (Kader et al., 1989) that would be expected in melon fruit, in which malic and citric acids are dominant (Lamikanra et al., 2000). The higher RQ values obtained in our study at suboptimal temperatures are likely a sign of slight fermentation at steady-state oxygen concentrations. This is not uncommon in fresh-cut melons, in which the loss of malic acid at 20 °C can be related to malo-lactic fermentation by the lactic acid bacteria (Lamikanra et al., 2000). Also, in fresh-cut ‘Piel de Sapo’ melon stored at 4 °C under 21 kPa O2 and 2.5 kPa O2 + 7 kPa CO2, the RQ increases during storage in association with ethanol production (Oms-Oliu et al., 2008). In addition, the rise in CO2 production observed in fresh-cut honeydew after 3 d at 10 °C or 6 d at 5 °C was attributed to tissue deterioration (Qi et al., 1999).

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1.

Effect of steady-state O2 partial pressure and storage temperature on the rate of O2 uptake (left) by cantaloupe pieces in sealed packages and corresponding respiratory quotient (right) and headspace CO2 (open triangles). On the left, solid lines represent the MM model fit, whereas dashed lines represent the MMk model fit. The oxygen partial pressures at which respiration reaches half its maximum (apparent Km) and the fermentation threshold (FT) are indicated with a vertical bar.

Citation: HortScience horts 47, 8; 10.21273/HORTSCI.47.8.1113

Fermentation occurred at higher oxygen partial pressure as the storage temperature increased from 0 to 10 °C (Table 3; Fig. 1), consistent with previous observations in other fruit (Beaudry et al., 1992; Lakakul et al., 1999). To avoid anaerobic respiration in honeydew melon, oxygen partial pressure must be increased from 2 kPa O2 at 5 °C to 4 kPa O2 at 10 °C (Qi et al., 1999). Our results indicate that fresh-cut cantaloupe melon should be packaged with oxygen partial pressure higher than 0.7 kPa at 0 °C and 1.3 kPa at 5 and 10 °C to prevent fermentation. At these oxygen concentrations, carbon dioxide levels were 7.6, 11.3, and 14.0 kPa at 0, 5, and 10 °C (Fig. 1), respectively. Package atmospheres commonly considered potentially beneficial to the quality of cantaloupe cubes require higher levels of oxygen, usually ≈3 to 5 kPa O2 combined with 6 to 15 kPa CO2 (Gorny, 1998). Similar gas mixtures have been tested by other authors with fresh-cut cantaloupe or honeydew melon, e.g., 4 kPa O2 + 10 kPa CO2 (Bai et al., 2001), 5 kPa O2 + 10 kPa CO2 (Amaro et al., 2012), 5 kPa O2 + 5 kPa CO2 (Bai et al., 2003), 2.5 kPa O2 + 7 kPa CO2 (Oms-Oliu et al., 2007), and 2 to 4 kPa O2 + 10 kPa CO2 (Qi et al., 1999).

Modeling the effect of oxygen concentration and temperature on respiration rate.

Oxygen uptake rate increased with temperature and pO2pkg in a way consistent with Michaelis-Menten kinetics (Fig. 1). Respiratory parameters were modeled as exponential functions of temperature (Cameron et al., 1994). Alternatively, was treated as constant coupled with as an exponential function of temperature (Hertog et al., 1998; Jacxsens et al., 2000). These models provided a good fit to the experimental data (Fig. 1) as assessed by the RMSE (Table 2). The fit was slightly poorer (RMSE = 0.013) when was taken as constant (MMk), and a deviation from experimental data was observed at high O2 partial pressures at 10 °C (Fig. 1).

Maximal O2 uptake rate is highly dependent on the temperature. The activation energy was estimated at 66 to 84 kJ·mol−1 (Table 2) and the Q10 was from 2.8 to 3.7 (Table 2). Q10 values of 3.3 to 3.6 for cubes of muskmelon and honeydew melons have been reported in the interval 0 to 10 °C (Watada et al., 1996) and a Q10 of 3.1 can be computed for whole cantaloupe melon from the data compiled by Exama et al. (1993). Activation energy of intact produce generally range from 50 to 89 kJ·mol−1 (Exama et al., 1993; Fonseca et al., 2002) and is often higher for fresh-cut produce (Gomes et al., 2010; Jacxsens et al., 2000).

Respiratory responses to low oxygen and implications for modified atmosphere packaging.

A positive difference between for O2 uptake and the fermentation threshold—named “safe working atmosphere” by Beaudry (2000)—can be taken as an indicator that significant decreases in metabolic activity can be obtained through the reduction in oxygen partial pressure. To reduce the respiration rate of fresh-cut cantaloupe by 50%, oxygen partial pressure must be less than 0.6 kPa, values lower than the fermentation threshold of 0.7 kPa at 0 °C (Table 4; Fig. 1). Therefore, a safe working atmosphere does not exist for fresh-cut cantaloupe, and limited extension of shelf life is anticipated through the reduction of oxygen levels. A similar response was found in packed strawberry fruits (Hertog et al., 1999) and fresh-cut ‘Rocha’ pear (Gomes et al., 2010) suggesting that low-oxygen MAP provides little or no benefit to extend quality attributes that depend on the metabolic rate of these commodities. Consistently, color, firmness, and soluble solids content of fresh-cut cantaloupe were unaffected by oxygen levels (Amaro et al., 2012). However, the production of flavor-important esters is favored under high oxygen levels (16 to 18 kPa) and suppressed at 5 kPa O2, suggesting that high oxygen is required for desirable aroma revelation by fresh-cut cantaloupe (Amaro et al., 2012).

Table 4.

Parameter best estimates for fresh-cut cantaloupe melon stored at various temperatures.

Table 4.

If this assumption proves correct, the potential benefits of MAP reported for fresh-cut cantaloupe (Gorny, 1998) are not attributable to the low oxygen levels; instead, they are likely explained by the high CO2 partial pressure, reduced water loss, and lower microbial contamination resulting from the package barrier.

In conclusion, the respiratory parameters reported here suggest that there is a physiological limitation to the extension of shelf life of fresh-cut cantaloupe through the reduction of oxygen partial pressure, justifying the limited attention of the industry operators to the optimization of MAP for oxygen levels as long as the tissue is under aerobic conditions.

Literature Cited

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  • Amaro, A.L., Beaulieu, J.C., Grimm, C.C., Stein, R.E. & Almeida, D.P.F. 2012 Effect of oxygen on aroma volatiles and quality of fresh-cut cantaloupe and honeydew melons Food Chem. 130 49 57

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  • Bai, J.H., Saftner, R.A. & Watada, A.E. 2003 Characteristics of fresh-cut honeydew (Cucumis × melo L.) available to processors in winter and summer and its quality maintenance by modified atmosphere packaging Postharvest Biol. Technol. 28 349 359

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
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    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
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  • View in gallery

    Effect of steady-state O2 partial pressure and storage temperature on the rate of O2 uptake (left) by cantaloupe pieces in sealed packages and corresponding respiratory quotient (right) and headspace CO2 (open triangles). On the left, solid lines represent the MM model fit, whereas dashed lines represent the MMk model fit. The oxygen partial pressures at which respiration reaches half its maximum (apparent Km) and the fermentation threshold (FT) are indicated with a vertical bar.

  • Aguayo, E., Escalona, V.H. & Artés, F. 2004 Metabolic behaviour and quality changes of whole and fresh processed melon J. Food Sci. 69 148 155

  • Amaro, A.L., Beaulieu, J.C., Grimm, C.C., Stein, R.E. & Almeida, D.P.F. 2012 Effect of oxygen on aroma volatiles and quality of fresh-cut cantaloupe and honeydew melons Food Chem. 130 49 57

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bai, J.H., Saftner, R.A. & Watada, A.E. 2003 Characteristics of fresh-cut honeydew (Cucumis × melo L.) available to processors in winter and summer and its quality maintenance by modified atmosphere packaging Postharvest Biol. Technol. 28 349 359

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bai, J.H., Saftner, R.A., Watada, A.E. & Lee, Y.S. 2001 Modified atmosphere maintains quality of fresh-cut cantaloupe (Cucumis melo L.) J. Food Sci. 66 1207 1211

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Beaudry, R.M. 2000 Responses of horticultural commodities to low oxygen: Limits to the expanded use of modified atmosphere packaging HortTechnology 10 491 500

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Beaudry, R.M., Cameron, A.C., Shirazi, A. & Dostal-Lange, D.L. 1992 Modified-atmosphere packaging of blueberry fruit: Effect of temperature on package O2 and CO2 J. Amer. Soc. Hort. Sci. 117 436 441

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Cameron, A.C., Beaudry, R.M., Banks, N.H. & Yelanich, M.V. 1994 Modified-atmosphere packaging of blueberry fruit: Modeling respiration and package oxygen partial pressures as a function of temperature J. Amer. Soc. Hort. Sci. 119 534 539

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Exama, A., Arul, J., Lencki, R.W., Lee, L.Z. & Toupin, C. 1993 Suitability of plastic films for modified atmosphere packaging of fruits and vegetables J. Food Sci. 58 1365 1370

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Fonseca, S.C., Oliveira, F.A.R. & Brecht, J.K. 2002 Modelling respiration rate of fresh fruits and vegetables for modified atmosphere packages: A review J. Food Eng. 52 99 119

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Gomes, M.H., Beaudry, R.M., Almeida, D.P.F. & Malcata, F.X. 2010 Modelling respiration of packaged fresh-cut ‘Rocha’ pear as affected by oxygen concentration and temperature J. Food Eng. 96 74 79

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Gorny, J.R. 1998 A summary of CA and MA requirements and recommendations for fresh-cut (minimally processed) fruits and vegetables, p. 30–66. In: Gorny, J.R. (ed.). Proc. of 7th Intl Controlled Atmosphere Res. Conf., Vol. 5. Davis, CA

  • Hertog, M.L.A.T.M., Boerrigter, H.A.M., van den Boogaard, G.J.P.M., Tijskens, L.M.M. & van Schaik, A.C.R. 1999 Predicting keeping quality of strawberries (cv ‘Elsanta’) packed under modified atmospheres: An integrated model approach Postharvest Biol. Technol. 15 1 12

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hertog, M.L.A.T.M., Peppelenbos, H.W., Evelo, R.G. & Tijskens, L.M.M. 1998 A dynamic and generic model of gas exchange of respiring produce: The effects of oxygen, carbon dioxide and temperature Postharvest Biol. Technol. 14 335 349

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jacxsens, L., Devlieghere, F., Rudder, T.D. & Debevere, J. 2000 Designing equilibrium modified atmosphere packages for fresh-cut vegetables subjected to changes in temperature Lebensm. Wiss. Technol. 33 178 187

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kader, A.A., Zagory, D. & Kerbel, E. 1989 Modified atmosphere packaging of fruits and vegetables Crit. Rev. Food Sci. Nutr. 28 1 30

  • Lakakul, R., Beaudry, R.M. & Hernandez, R.J. 1999 Modeling respiration of apple slices in modified-atmosphere packages J. Food Sci. 64 105 110

  • Lamikanra, O., Chen, J.C., Banks, D. & Hunter, P.A. 2000 Biochemical and microbial changes during storage of minimally processed cantaloupe J. Agr. Food Chem. 48 5955 5961

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lee, D.S., Haggar, P.E., Lee, J. & Yam, K.L. 1991 Model for fresh produce respiration in modified atmospheres based on principles of enzyme kinetics J. Food Sci. 56 1580 1585

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • McGlasson, W.B. & Pratt, H.K. 1964 Effects of wounding on respiration and ethylene production by cantaloupe fruit tissue Plant Physiol. 39 128 132

  • Offner, J. 2011 Convenience factor helps sell melons at retail. The Packer. 15 Apr. 2011

  • Oms-Oliu, G., Soliva-Fortuny, R. & Martín-Belloso, O. 2007 Effect of ripeness on the shelf-life of fresh-cut melon preserved by modified atmosphere packaging Eur. Food Res. Technol. 225 301 311

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M. Helena GomesCBQF, Escola Superior de Biotecnologia do Porto, Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Rua Dr. António Bernardino de Almeida, 4200-072 Porto, Portugal

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Randolph M. BeaudryDepartment of Horticulture, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-1325

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Domingos P.F. AlmeidaCBQF, Escola Superior de Biotecnologia do Porto, Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Rua Dr. António Bernardino de Almeida, 4200-072 Porto, Portugal; and Faculdade de Ciê ncias, Universidade do Porto, Rua Campo Alegre, 687, 4169-007 Porto, Portugal

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Contributor Notes

This work was funded by Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, Portugal, and co-funded by POPH, European Social Fund, through project grant PTDC/AGR-ALI/66144/2006 and the PhD grant SFRH/BD/22628/2005 to M.H. Gomes.

To whom reprint requests should be addressed; e-mail dalmeida@fc.up.pt.

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