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Mishi Vachev, Jason Cavatorta, and Liza J. Conrad

For nearly three decades the ‘Athena’ melon ( Cucumis melo L.) has dominated the eastern shipper cantaloupe market for its uniform quality and proven performance across a broad range of production areas. ‘Athena’ has thick and firm flesh, coarse

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B.B. Boynton, C.A. Sims, M.O. Balaban, M.R. Marshall, B.A. Welt, and J.K. Brecht

Cantaloupes (Cucumis melo) in three separate trials were cut into 1-inch cubes and irradiated at 0, 0.25, 0.5, 0.75, 1.0, 1.25, or 1.5 kGy; 0, 0.1, 0.2, 0.3, 0.4, 0.5, or 0.7 kGy; and 0, 0.3, 0.6, or 0.9 kGy, respectively. They were then stored in air at 3 °C for up to 20 days, and respiration rate, measured as carbon dioxide (CO2) production, microbiological counts [total plate count (TPC) and yeast and molds], texture, and color were measured during storage. Respiration rates were initially higher in irradiated cantaloupe. After 8 days, respiration was similar between irradiated and control fruit. Irradiation moderated increases in respiration in a dose-dependent manner. Highest irradiation doses resulted in initial TPC reductions of 1.5 log compared to the non-irradiated controls, and also prevented the 2.5 to 3 log TPC increases seen in controls after 10 to 11 days of storage. Texture differed on day 1, when controls were most firm, but irradiation maintained greater firmness than controls after day 7. Irradiation of fresh-cut cantaloupe has potential for shelf life extension and for integration with modified atmosphere packaging systems.

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Susan L.F. Meyer

Two strains of the fungus Verticillium lecanii (A. Zimmermann) Viégas were studied as potential biocontrol agents for root-knot nematode (Meloidogyne incognita (Kofoid & White) Chitwood) on cantaloupe (Cucumis melo L.). For the study, pots were filled with soil that had been inoculated with M. incognita (inoculum was applied at two levels: 1000 and 5000 eggs/pot). Each fungus strain was applied individually by pouring an aqueous suspension (made from a wettable granule formulation) into the inoculated soil. Controls received water only. One cantaloupe seedling was then transplanted into each pot. Plants were grown for 55 days in the greenhouse, and then harvested and assessed for root and shoot growth and for nematode egg production. In pots inoculated with 1000 eggs/plant, neither fungus strain affected nematode egg numbers. At the 5000 eggs/plant inoculum level, both strains of the fungus suppressed egg numbers (counts were 28% and 31% less than water controls). Neither strain of V. lecanii affected the number of eggs embedded in root galls; the fungus suppressed nematode population numbers overall solely by affecting the number of eggs located outside of root tissues. Both fungus strains were also autoclaved and then applied to soil, to test for effects of nonviable fungus. In pots inoculated with 5000 eggs, application of one autoclaved strain resulted in a 35% suppression in egg numbers after 55 days, suggesting that the fungus produced a heat-stable substance deleterious to the nematode.

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J. Alberto García-Salazar, Rhonda K. Skaggs, and Terry L. Crawford

fruit and vegetable producers in non-export regions who strategically organize, produce, promote, and sell their products. Cantaloupe melons [Cucumis melo (L.)] are produced in at least 13 different Mexican states, in every climatic zone, and by growers

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Thomas W. Whitaker

Abstract

The common name for botanical varieties and cultivars of Cucumis melo L. is muskmelon. This term includes those forms with both edible and inedible fruits. In the United States the word “cantaloupe” has been applied to cultivars belonging to C. melo var. reticulatus Naud. The fruits of var. reticulatus are medium in size, the surface is netted, and has shallow vein tracts. The flesh is usually salmon colored, but it may vary from green to deep salmon-orange. The vines usually bear andromonoecious flowers, and the fruit generally separates from the stem when mature (slips). Most cultivars grown for commercial purposes in this country belong to C. melo var. reticulatus. The name “cantaloupe” has become firmly imbedded in American culture to indicate these medium-sized, netted melons found in season on shelves of nearly every grocery store and supermarket in the country. For this reason, little can be done to correct its usage except to point out that “cantaloupe” is a misnomer.

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J.C. Beaulieu, J.M. Lea, G. Eggleston, and Z. Peralta-Inga

We express thanks to Dean Liere and Alex May, Syngenta Seeds, Inc., ROGERS Brand Vegetable Seeds, for supplying commercial cantaloupe cultivars, breeding inbreds and technical information. We gratefully appreciate the statistical advice and help

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M. Helena Gomes, Randolph M. Beaudry, and Domingos P.F. Almeida

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

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John C. Beaulieu

managing, tagging, and supplying anthesis-tagged immature and mature cantaloupe fruit; Jeanne M. Lea for volatile data analysis; and Amber D. Harts and James A. Miller for laboratory assistance. Statistical advice and support were obtained from Vicki

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A. Hakim, A. Purvis, and M. Khatoon

Cantaloupe at commercial stage of maturity were sliced, i.e., prepared as minimally proceed, rinsed with or without sodium hypochloride solution (50 ppm), and drained. They were stored in perforated polyethylene package (PE) at 1 °C in air and controlled atmosphere (2 % O2 and 5 % CO2) for 5 and 10 days. Fresh-cut cantaloupe slices were analyzed initially and after 5 and 10 days of storage for weight loss, lycopene content, fungus infection, flavor and taste, TSS, pH, ethanol, firmness, and electrolyte leakage. Fruit stored in CA exhibited lower weight loss, higher lycopene content, less fungus infection, better flavor and taste, more firmness, higher TSS content, and lower electrolyte leakage than store in air. When compared to fruit treated with sodium hypochloride, lower lycopene content, higher fungus infection, inferior flavor and taste, more softness, and higher electrolyte leakage were detected in fruit that were not rinsed with sodium hypochloride solution. Extended storage time resulted in higher weight loss, increased fungus infection, bad taste, off-flavor, more softness, lower TSS content, and higher leakage value. This study indicates that it is possible to extend the shelf-life of fresh-cut cantaloupe slices from 5 to 10 days if kept at 1 °C in 2% O2 and 5% CO2 in PE package.

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John C. Beaulieu and Jeanne M. Lea

., 2005 ), there were not consistent changes in hue during storage (data not shown). Cantaloupe has weak polyphenol oxidase activity, which helps explain the lack of browning reactions in the cut product, even though water-dipped cubes have demonstrated