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Sylvia M. Blankenship

Banana fruit respiration rates and quality parameters such as peel color, pulp pH and soluble solids content were examined at 14°C under a number of controlled atmosphere (CA) environments. CA conditions were 1%, 2%, 4%, or 8% oxygen with or without 5% carbon dioxide. Each treatment combination was also done with or without 50 μL·L–1 ethylene added to the atmospheres. Green banana fruit were either gassed with ethylene (triggered) or ungassed. One percent oxygen was too low to consistently give undamaged bananas. The addition of 5% carbon dioxide to the controlled atmosphere increased fruit respiration rate whereas air plus 5% carbon dioxide showed decreased respiration when compared to air control fruits. Green, triggered fruit partially ripened under the CA conditions. Pulp pH and soluble solids content changed in a normal ripening pattern, however peel color was poor. Addition of ethylene to the atmospheres advanced fruit ripening somewhat in all fruit. When green, ungassed bananas were placed under CA, the presence of ethylene in the atmosphere did not cause the bananas to turn yellow, although some changes in pH and soluble solids were detectable. In triggered fruit the presence of ethylene in the storage advanced ripening with higher oxygen concentrations promoting faster ripening. Bananas that have ripened under CA conditions are not as high quality as those ripened in air in terms of visual appearance.

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R.J. Bender, J.K. Brecht, S.A. Sargent, and D.J. Huber

Exposure to hypoxic O2 levels has been reported to result in better epidermal color, higher titratable acidity and soluble solids levels, delayed softening and reduced ethylene production and respiratory activity in many fruit species. Mangoes have been shown to tolerate short term (4 days) exposures to O2 concentrations below 0.5% with beneficial effects on firmness retention and maintenance of ground color. In the present work, `Haden' mangoes were stored for 14 days at 15°C with O2 levels ranging from 2% to 5% and compared to an air control and an atmosphere of 25% CO2 in air. `Tommy Atkins' mangoes were stored under the same treatments at 12°C for 21 days. After storage at 12 or 15°C the mangoes were transferred to air at 20°C for 5 days. Ethanol production rates during controlled atmosphere (CA) storage were significantly higher at O2 levels of 4% and below. Respiration (CO2 production) rates were reduced during CA storage but did not differ from the control after transfer to air. There were no differences in ethylene production as well as in flesh firmness, titratable acidity and total sugars. The ground color of mangoes kept under the lowest O2 concentration and under 25% CO2 was greener, as indicated by higher hue angles, than in the other treatments upon transfer to air at 20°C. However, only the mangoes stored under high CO2 maintained higher hue angles during the subsequent 5 days at 20°C.

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Yong Seo Park, Clara Pelayo, Betty Hess-Pierce, and Adel A. Kader

`Shinko' and `Shinsui' Asian pears were kept in air, 2 kPa O2, 2 kPa O2 + 2.5 kPa CO2, and 2 kPa O2 + 5 kPa CO2 (balance N2 in each treatment) at 0 °C or 5 °C for up to 24 weeks. The three CA treatments reduced respiration (O2 consumption) and ethylene production rates relative to air control pears; these rates were higher at 5 °C than at 0 °C and higher for `Shinsui' than for `Shinko' pears. While `Shinsui' pears had a climacteric pattern of respiration and ethylene production rates, `Shinko' pears produced very small quantities of ethylene and exhibited a non-climacteric respiratory pattern. `Shinko' pears had a much longer postharvest life than `Shinsui' pears (24 weeks vs. 12 weeks at 0 °C). CA treatments had a greater effect on delaying deterioration of `Shinsui' than `Shinko' pears, which were more sensitive to CO2 injury and associated accumulation of fermentative metabolites (acetaldehyde, ethanol, ethyl acetate). `Shinko' pears did not benefit from CA storage and were best kept in air at 0 °C. An atmosphere of 2 kPa O2 with or without up to 5 kPa CO2 delayed flesh breakdown of `Shinsui' pears during storage 0 °C.

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Renar J. Bender, Jeffrey K. Brecht, Steven A. Sargent, and Donald J. Huber

`Haden' and `Tommy Atkins' mangoes (Mangifera indica L.) were stored in air, 2, 3, 4 or 5 kPa O2 plus N2, or 25 kPa CO2 plus air for 14 days at 15 °C or 21 days at 12 °C, respectively, then in air for 5 days at 20 °C to determine their tolerance to reduced O2 levels for storage times encountered in typical marine shipments. All low O2 treatments reduced mature green mango respiration (CO2 production), however, elevated ethanol production occurred in 2 and 3 kPa O2 storage, with the levels two to three times higher in `Tommy Atkins' than `Haden'. In contrast, `Haden' fruit at the onset of the climacteric also accumulated ethanol in 4 kPa O2 and produced 10 to 20-fold more ethanol in 2 and 3 kPa O2 than preclimacteric fruit. While there were no visible injury symptoms, off flavor developed in mature green fruit at 2 kPa O2 and in ripening initiated fruit at 2 and 3 kPa O2. Ethanol production was not affected by storage in 25 kPa CO2. Ethylene production was reduced slightly by low O2, however, `Haden' fruit also showed a residual inhibitory effect on ethylene production after 2 or 3 kPa O2 storage, while `Tommy Atkins' fruit stored in 2 kPa O2 produced a burst of ethylene upon transfer to air at 20 °C. Fruit firmness, total sugars, and starch levels did not differ among the treatments, but 2, 3 or 4 kPa O2 and 25 kPa CO2 maintained significantly higher acidity than 5 kPa O2 or air. The epidermal ground color responded differently to low O2 and high CO2 in the two mango cultivars. Only 2 kPa O2 maintained `Haden' color better than air, while all low O2 levels maintained `Tommy Atkins' color equally well and better than air. High CO2 was more effective than low O2 in maintaining `Haden' color, but had about the same effect as low O2 on `Tommy Atkins'. Results indicate that preclimacteric `Haden' and `Tommy Atkins' mango fruit are able to tolerate 3 kPa O2 for 2 or 3 weeks at 12 to 15 °C and that tolerance to low O2 decreases as mangoes ripen. Results also show that low O2 and high CO2 affect mango ripening differentially.

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Harmander Pal Singh*, Dennis P. Murr, Gopi Paliyath, and Jennifer R. DeEll

`Gala' apples (Malus × domestica Borkh) were harvested at optimum maturity for long-term storage, precooled overnight at 0 °C, treated with 1 μL·L-1; 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) for 24 hours at 0 °C, and then placed in controlled atmosphere (CA) to determine the storage regime that would have the least negative impact on post-storage aroma volatile production. Fruit were stored at 0° and 2.5° C in ultra low oxygen (0.6% O2 -0.6% CO2; ULOCA), low oxygen (1.2% O2 -1.2% CO2; LOCA) and standard (2.5% O2 -2.5% CO2; SCA) CA for 120 and 240 days, and in ambient air for 60, 90, 120 and 150 days. Post-storage fruit volatiles were quantified by headspace analysis using a solid-phase micro-extraction (SPME) probe and FID-GC, and key volatiles were identified by GC-MS. Fruit volatile production was greatest at harvest, and decreased thereafter for fruit held in air and CA for up to 150 or 240 days, respectively. 1-MCP treatment resulted in reduced rates of respiration, ethylene and volatile production, regardless of storage regime, and resulted in a reduced production rate of all the major volatile compounds, including esters, alcohols, acids, aldehydes and ketones. Post-storage volatile production was the least in fruits removed from 0 °C in ULO, followed by LO, SCA, and then air. 1-MCP treatment inhibited post-storage volatile production in CA- and air-stored fruit by as much as 95 percent. However, recovery of aroma was delayed significantly in fruit which had been held at 0 °C vs. 2.5 ° C, suggesting aroma volatile synthesis in `Gala' is chilling sensitive.

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S.R. Drake and Tom Eisele

Red color of 2 strains (`Bisbee' and `Red Chief) of `Delicious' apples was increased (25%) by a 10 day delay beyond recommended harvest date. Color of `Oregon Spur' did not change during this 10 day period. Soluble solids content and size were also increased, but firmness decreased by 12%. In 2 of 3 years, firmness at harvest was 73 N or greater in all strains and these fruit lost little firmness during 9 months of CA. Poor firmness (<63 N) at harvest resulted in fruit with unacceptable firmness (53 N) after storage regardless of harvest time or strain. Loss in fruit quality was evident after a 5 day delay in atmosphere establishment with no further loss after a 10 day delay. `Oregon Spur' had the best color regardless of harvest, followed by `Bisbee' and `Red Chief. All strains (`Oregon Spur', `Bisbee' and `Red Chief) had good quality after long term CA. Sensory panelists could not distinguish flavor differences between strains, harvest dates or delay in storage establishment.

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Sylvia M. Blankenship and L. Eric Hinesley

Fraser fir [Abies fraseri (Pursh) Poir.] branches were held at 5C for 4 to 6 weeks in the following atmospheres: 1% or 3% in nitrogen; 0%, 1%, 5%, 10%, 20%, 40%, or 50% CO2 in air; or air only. Experiments were conducted in two. years during the fall, winter, and early spring. In general, CO2 ≥ 5% accelerated needle loss. There was considerable tree-to-tree variation in tolerance to elevated CO2. Oxygen at 1% killed branches, and 3% O2 showed no benefit compared to air. The initial dark respiration rate at 21C was about four times higher than at SC. Respiration decreased for ≈ 10 days and stabilized at 14% to 20% of the initial values. Respiration increased exponentially with increasing temperature between 5 and 27C. Short-term controlled or modified atmosphere storage would probably not be useful in improving the postharvest handling of Fraser fir.

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Laura Lehman-Salada and George M. Greene II

In both experiments. 20-apple samples from 6 commercial orchards were harvested and stored in 208 liter containers at 0C for 4, 6, and 8 months. Additional samples were removed from CA and held at 0C for 14 days before evaluation. Gas composition was measured and controlled 6 times per day using automatic control equipment.

In the first experiment, samples were stored at constant 0.0% CO2 and one of three O2 regimes (constant 2.0%. 0.5 rising to 3.5%. or 3.5% falling to 0.5% O2). Apples stored at 3.5% falling to 0.5% O2 during the storage period were softer than apples held at constant 2.0% or those held at 0.5% rising to 3.5% O2 during the storage period. Variable O2 concentrations did not influence weight loss during storage and insignificant scald, flesh browning, core browning, rot, and low 02 injury were observed.

In the second experiment, samples were stored at constant 2.0% O2 and one of three CO2 regimes (constant 0%, constant 5%. or 0% rising to 6% CO2). Constant 5% or rising CO2 conditions did not significantly influence flesh softening or weight loss during storage. Negligible CO2 injury was observed.

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Elhadi M. Yahia

The effectiveness of some poststorage treatments in enhancing the flavor components of low-ethylene controlled-atmosphere (LCA) stored `McIntosh' apples (Malus domestica Borkh.) was investigated. Fruits were stored for 9 months in LCA at 3.3C and then exposed to air at 20C and to air, simulated LCA, 100% O2, or light at 3.3C for up to 4 weeks. Respiration and ethylene production indicated that apples were still in the early stage of ripening after 9 months of storage in LCA. Gas chromatographic analysis for 13 odor-active volatiles revealed the presence of eight. Air at 20C after LCA significantly increased the production of some odor volatiles, while light for up to 3 weeks only slightly increased their concentration. Poststorage exposure to air or 100% O2 at 3.3C for up to 4 weeks was not effective in enhancing volatile formation.

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S.R. Drake, D.C. Elfving, and R.D. Gix

Pears (Pyrus communis `d'Anjou') were packed in six commercial paper wraps (dry; 3% oil; 3% oil with copper and ethoxyquin; 6% oil; 6% oil with ethoxyquin; 9% oil). After packing, the pears were placed in three different controlled atmosphere (CA) storage conditions in commercial CA rooms: 1) 1.5% oxygen (O) and 1% carbon dioxide (CO2); 2) 1.5% O2 and 3% CO2; 3) 1.5% O2 and 1% CO2 for 60 days, 4% O2 for 60 more days and finally 6% O2 for an additional 90 days. Pears were stored in CA for 120 and 210 days, with or without an additional 30 days in regular atmosphere (RA) storage to simulate shipping and handling. Objective quality evaluations were conducted after each storage period and sensory evaluations after 210 days of storage. Paper type influenced both the peel and flesh color of pears before and after ripening, but did not influence firmness, soluble solids or acid content. Subjective ratings of appearance and disorder incidence were unacceptable for pears stored in a variable atmosphere wrapped in dry or paper containing 3% oil. The disorder black speck was present only in pears wrapped in paper with 6% oil and stored in an atmosphere of 1.5% O2 and 1% CO2. Pears stored in an atmosphere of 1.5% O2 and 3% CO2 received acceptable subjective scores regardless of paper type.