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Adam Dale

Fruit from black, red and white currants, and gooseberries (Ribes L.) were grown commercially in North America at the beginning of the 20th Century. However, when white pine blister rust (WPBR) (Cronartium ribicola J. C. Fisch.) was introduced into the new world, their cultivation was discontinued. About 825,000 t (908,000 tons) of Ribes fruit are produced worldwide, almost entirely in Europe. The fruit is high in vitamin C, and is used to produce juice, and many other products. Now a wide range of imported Ribes products is available particularly in Canada, and the pick-your-own (PYO) market is increasing. Two diseases, powdery mildew [Spaerotheca mors-uvae (Schwein.) Berk. & Curt.] and WPBR, are the major problems encountered by growers. Fortunately, many new cultivars are resistant to these two diseases. Commercial acreage of Ribes in North America is located where the growing day degrees above 5 °C (41 °F), and the annual chilling hours are at least 1200. Initially, the Ribes industry will develop as PYO and for farm markets. But for a large industry to develop, juice products will needed. Our costs of production figures indicate that about 850 Canadian dollars ($CDN) per 1.0 t (1.1 tons) of fruit will be required to break even.

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Bhimanagouda S. Patil and Ashok K. Alva

Accumulating epidemiological evidences indicate that citrus phytochemicals have prevented chronic diseases such cancer and heart diseases. To enhance nutraceutical levels, field experiments were conducted using `Ruby Red' grapefruit on Carrizo citrange rootstock to evaluate the effects of variable fertilizer rates on nutraceutical contents. The trees received annual nitrogen rates from 0 to 280 kg·ha-1 (using a 1 N: 0.25 P: 1 K blend) under optimal irrigation schedule. Subsamples of fruit were analyzed for nutraceutical levels. HPLC analysis showed that naringin concentrations of the fruit collected from the trees treated with different levels of nitrogen differ significantly, and naringin levels decreased with increased nitrogen levels. Fruit from the control treatment had 1316 mg·mL-1 of naringin compared to the fruit collected from 280 kg N/ha per year trees (1056 mg·mL -1). A similar trend was observed with tasteless flavonoid naringenin rutinoside (narirutin). Total vitamin C [ascorbic acid (AA) plus dehydroascorbic acid (DHAA)] content from the fruit collected decreased with the nitrogen levels increased. These results demonstrate that increased fertilizer rates have an influence on the nutraceutical levels; therefore, there is a potential for further investigations on fine tuning the preharvest production programs to improve the nutritional value of the fruit.

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Kanjana Mahattanatawee, Elizabeth Baldwin, Kevin Goodner, John Manthey, and Gary Luzio

Fourteen tropical fruits from southern Florida [red guava, white guava, carambola, red pitaya (red dragon), white pitaya (white dragon), mamey, sapodilla, lychee, longan, green mango, ripe mango, green papaya and ripe papaya] were evaluated for antioxidant activity, ascorbic acid (vitamin C), total fiber and pectin. ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) and DPPH (1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl, radical scavenging activity) assays were used to determine antioxidant activity. The total soluble phenolics (TSP), ORAC, and DPPH ranged from 205.4 to 2316.7 μg gallic acid equivalent/g puree, 0.03 to 16.7 μmole Trolox equivalent/g puree and 2.1 to 620.2 μg gallic acid equivalent/g puree, respectively. Total ascorbic acid (TAA), total dietary fiber (TDF) and pectin ranged from 13.6 to 159.6 mg/100 g, 0.88 to 7.25 g/100 g and 0.2 to 1.04 g/100 g, respectively. The antioxidant activities, TSP, TAA, TDF and pectin appeared to be influenced by cultivar (papaya, guava and dragon fruit) and ripening stage (papaya and/or mango). Data demonstrate the potential benefits of several of these fruits for human health.

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Paul M. Chen, Diane M. Varga, and Clark F. Seavert

We have established that `d'Anjou' pears (Pyrus communis) are properly ripened for fresh-cut use when flesh firmness (FF) is between 5 lb (2.3 kg) and 7 lb (3.2 kg). In this study, the fruit was ripened in air enriched with 100 ppm (mL·L-1) ethylene at 68 °F (20.0 °C). Afterward, we investigated three slicing methods, each employing a fruit sectionizer for dividing individual pears into eight wedges. The easiest and most convenient cutting procedure involved pouring an antibrowning agent onto the incision, but without allowing the fruit to directly contact the air. We evaluated various combinations of L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and potassium chloride (KCl) for their ability to prevent any discoloration while also not affecting taste or injuring the cut surface. The most suitable antibrowning solution contained 10% L-ascorbic acid and 2% KCl (pH 2.3). A dipping time of 30 s was sufficient for maintaining the wedges with little discoloration over a 14-d period, at either 30 or 35 °F (-1.1 or 1.7 °C). Here, we also present a prototype design for a 1.6-pt (0.76-L) transparent plastic container with eight compartments for holding wedges sliced with a commercially available sectionizer.

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J. Emilio Villarreal, Leonardo Lombardini, and Luis Cisneros-Zevallos

The objective of this study was to evaluate kernels of different pecan (Carya illinoinensis) cultivars for their antioxidant profile and their contribution to nutritional and quality attributes. Kernels were analyzed for their antioxidant capacity (AC), phenolic, tannin, and vitamin C content. Fatty acid (FA) composition and phenolic profile were determined using, respectively, gas and liquid chromatographic techniques. AC was measured using one spectrophotometrical [2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH)] and one fluorescence method [oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC)]. Phenolic and tannin content were determined using spectrophotometrical assays. Ascorbic and dehydroascorbic acid were determined using a HPLC. Both AC methodologies gave similar results with marked differences between cultivars. `Desirable' had an antioxidant capacity of 47,747 μg·g-1 TEq/DW with DPPH method followed closely by `Cheyenne' (36,192 μg·g-1 TEq/DW) and, with smaller amounts, by `Cape Fear' and `Pawnee' (16,540 and 13,705 μg·g-1 TEq/DW, respectively). Total phenolic content showed a similar trend, but `Pawnee' showed a higher phenolic content than `Cape Fear'. The FA composition varied between cultivars. This phenolic profile jointly with FA composition and other compositional characteristics will provide the quality and nutritional attributes of each specific cultivar. Furthermore, the high antioxidant profile of pecans suggests that bioactive and anticancer properties should also be evaluated. Results from the present research can be used as an additional tool to evaluate pecan cultivars and help create new guidelines for breeding programs to select “healthier” pecans.

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Xiaogang Li, Ling Jin, Jing Ling, and Zhongchun Jiang

Foliar application of hormones and nutrients can improve fruit quality, but specific conditions for applying hormones and nutrients may vary among fruit species. The objective of this study was to determine the effects of 6-BA, potassium phosphate (monobasic), and calcium chloride on fruit weight, palatability, and storage quality of 8-year-old pear trees, cv. Hosui. Foliar applications of 1 mg·L-1 6-BA, 0.3% potassium phosphate, 0.3% calcium chloride, or 0.3% potassium phosphate + 0.3% calcium chloride were made at 20-day intervals from June until maturity. All foliar applications increased average fruit weight over the control (distilled water). 6-BA or the combination of potassium phosphate and calcium chloride increased fruit weight more than did potassium phosphate or calcium chloride alone. Fruit palatability, measured as the ratio of sugar content to acid content, was significantly lower in 6-BA, potassium phosphate, and calcium chloride treatments than in the control. All treatments increased vitamin C content over the control. Fruit storage quality in calcium chloride or calcium chloride + potassium phosphate treatments was superior to that in the control. Potassium phosphate alone and 6-BA treatments had no effects on fruit storage quality. We conclude that foliar applications of 0.3% potassium phosphate + 0.3% calcium chloride or 1 mg·L-1 6-BA can increase average fruit weight and improve fruit palatability.

Free access

Yuji Noguchi, Tatsuya Mochizuki, and Kazuyoshi Sone

The use of wild species as breeding materials was tried for expanding hereditary variation in strawberry. Some interspecific hybrids setting large fruits with peculiar aroma have been bred by pollination of F. vesca to F. xananassa. Although Asian wild diploid strawberries such as F. nilgerrensis or F. iinumae have not been exploited as a breeding material until the present, the crossing test between cultivated strawberries (8x) and the Asian wild strawberries (2x) were attempted. The interspecific hybrids originated from pollination of F. nilgerrensis or F. iinumae to F. xananassa cv. `Toyonoka' were all sterile pentaploids. By in vitro colchicine treatment of these sterile hybrids for chromosome doubling, many fruiting interspecific hybrids were produced. In particular, some superior hybrids were obtained from `Toyonoka' × F. nilgerrensis. From the results of RAPD analysis, the interspecific hybrids had the fragments specific for both parents. While their morphological characters were close to `Toyonoka', they had some characters from F. nilgerrensis, such as numerous hair on their petioles and peduncles. Their fruits have good characters that are same level of cultivated strawberry about size, Brix, acidity, and vitamin C content. The flesh is soft and skin color is pale pink. The aroma components are resemble F. nilgerrensis, and enrich ethyl acetate. The fragrance of interspecific hybrid like peach is characteristic.

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Murshidul Hoque*, Husein Ajwa, and Beiquan Mou

Lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.) is an essential salad crop in the American diet. Nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) are required for successful lettuce production and can influence lettuce quality. The objective of the study was to evaluate changes in nutritional composition of romaine (`Green Tower') and iceberg (`Sharp Shooter') lettuce in responses to N, P and K fertilization during fall production in Salinas, Calif. Sixteen treatment combinations of fertilizer were selected to provide a range of treatments. N was applied at 0, 112, 225, and 338 kg·ha-1 as ammonium nitrate; P was applied at 0, 112, and 225 kg/ha as super phosphate; and K was applied at 0 and 112 kg·ha-1 as muriate of potash. Nutritional content of fresh tissue of two types of lettuce was analyzed using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Among the parameters analyzed were lutein, beta-carotene, chlorophyll a, and chlorophyll b. Yield was increased with increasing N fertilizer level, but was not affected by P or K application rates. The best post harvest quality, however, was at moderate P application rate. Increasing the N and P rates gradually increased glucose content in lettuce but decreased the shelf life. Significant differences between the two types of lettuce were found in chlorophyll, lutein and beta-carotene content. No significant correlations were found between soil fertilizer application levels and nutritional content of lettuce. However, the ratio of chlorophyll a and b were greater with the increase of fertilizer rate. Nutritional composition including vitamin C will be presented.

Free access

James B. Magee

Many concepts of the nutritional value of fruit and vegetables generally accepted in the past, in the light of more knowledge, today are considered “misconceptions.” For example, the tomato, once considered poisonous, then shown edible, later proved to be a “good” food and a valuable source of minerals and vitamin C, today shows the potential for significant anti-cancer activity. Results of a 6-year study of the dietary habits of 47,000 men reported up to a 45% reduction in the incidence of prostate cancer of those who ate 10 or more servings per week of tomato-based products. Other misconceptions to be discussed include nightshade vegetables and arthritis, apples after meals to clean the teeth and gums, and “if a little is good for you, a lot must be better.” Today's nutritional ideas about many fruits and vegetables may become tomorrow's misconceptions as our knowledge of the composition (e.g., phytochemicals) of fruits and vegetables increases. Examples of this are include the use of muscadine pomace and the nutritive value of strawberries.

Open access

Zunfu Lv, Simeng Zhang, and Guoquan Lu

protein, carotene, vitamin C, and minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, and iron, with significantly higher contents than those of sweetpotato roots. Because of their multifunctional contents, sweetpotato sprouts are beneficial to the human body ( Islam et