Heating Rate and Tolerance of Naturally Degreened `Dancy' Tangerine to High-temperature Forced Air for Fruit Fly Disinfestation

in HortTechnology

`Dancy' tangerines (Citrus reticulata Blanco) were harvested after color break and exposed to high-temperature forced air (HTFA) at 45C for 3.5 or 4 h to kill Mexican fruit fly [Anastrepha ludens (Loew)] larvae. Heat-treated and control fruit were stored subsequently for 2 weeks at 4C. Tangerines harvested after color break (naturally degreened) tolerated exposure to HTFA in a similar fashion as tangerines harvested before color break and degreened by postharvest exposure to ethylene. Titratable acidity (TA) was significantly lower after heat treatments. Flavor, soluble solids concentration, external appearance, incidence of decay, percent juice yield, percent weight change, and flavedo color of heat-treated fruit were not different from nonheat-treated, control fruit. Exposure to HTFA is a viable alternative to methyl bromide for disinfestation of `Dancy' tangerine.

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