Radio Frequency Treatments for Postharvest Codling Moth Control in Fresh Apples

in HortTechnology
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  • 1 USDA-ARS-YARL, 5230 Konnowac Pass Rd., Wapato, WA 98951.
  • | 2 USDA-ARS-TFRL, 1104 N. Western Ave., Wenatchee, WA 98801.
  • | 3 Department of Biological Systems Engineering, Washington State University, Pullman, WA 99164.

Efficacy of using radio frequency (RF) at 27.12 MHz was evaluated as a postharvest quarantine treatment against fifth instars of the codling moth [Cydia pomonella (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae)], in apples (Malus sylvestris). Tests under the given conditions demonstrated that the energy fields between the RF unit's electrodes were neither predictable nor uniform. Moving fruit submerged in water during RF exposure may improve uniformity, but pulp temperatures varied considerably among fruit, among sites on the same fruit, and at different depths within the same site. As a result of these inconsistencies, quarantine efficacy was not obtained either using a range of final average temperatures from 40 to 68 °C (104.0 to 154.4 °F) or at holding times up to 20 minutes. We concluded it would be difficult to obtain the appropriate parameters for treatment efficacy and fruit quality maintenance using this technology under these conditions.

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