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Rangjian Qiu, Yuanshu Jing, Chunwei Liu, Zaiqiang Yang, and Zhenchang Wang

leaching fraction (LF) on total soluble solids (TSS), Vitamin C content (VC), fruit firmness (F n ), fruit water content (F WC ), fruit length (F L ), maximum fruit width (F MW ), and fruit shape index (F SI ) of hot pepper using the two-way analysis of

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Ming-Wei S. Kao, Floyd Woods, William A. Dozier, Robert C. Ebel, Chang Y. Lee, and Jun Bae Jee

The health status of Alabama's population ranks above the national average with respect to the prevalence of poor overall health indicators. Consumer knowledge of the health benefits of consumption of fresh fruit is lacking. The compositional and nutritional qualities of fruit are highly variable among states with different climate, soil, and other environmental conditions. Compositional and nutritional data of fresh fruit that reflect Alabama growing conditions is limited. Commercially fully ripened kiwi fruit (Actinidia deliciosa cvs. Fitzgerald and Hayward) were compared for fruit quality (pH, TA, °Brix, °Brix/TA, and soluble sugars), and antioxidant properties; Vitamin C (reduced, oxidized, and total), Vitamin C Equivalent Antioxidant Capacity (VCEAC), ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP), DPPH radical scavenging activity, total phenolics, and flavonoids. In general, `Fitzgerald' ranked higher in overall fruit quality and antioxidant properties when compared to `Hayward'.

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Ahmed M. Akl, Abdel-Fattah M. Eid, and Mohamed Y. Hegab

This part of the investigation studied the effect of foliar spraying with urea (0.5%); a mixture of Zn (0.4%), Mn (0.3%), Fe (0.5%), and Cu (0.3%) in sulphates (from 23% Zn, 28% Mn, 19% Fe, and 30% Cu, respectively); and two growth regulators (GA3 at 25 ppm and α-NAA at 10 ppm); as well as number and date of sprays on fruit volume, percentage of pulp, juice acidity, TSS, reducing and total sugars, TSS: acid ratio, and vitamin C content. The results showed that Washington Navel orange trees receiving urea, micronutrients, or both gave fruit with significantly larger volume compared with the control, but the treatment including both resulted in the highest values for fruit volume in 1991–92 and 1992–93 seasons. GA3 sprays gave the highest fruit volume, followed by NAA, while the water spray (control) gave the lowest values for this trait. Two sprays of urea, micronutrients, and GA3 resulted in the highest fruit volume in 1991–92 and 1992–93 seasons. The effect of different treatments on pulp percentage were slight and mostly insignificant in the two experimental seasons. Spraying urea, micronutrients, or both slightly reduced juice acidity and increased TSS, sugars, and vitamin C contents, as well as TSS: acid ratio; however, both of them together was more effective in this respect. Conversely, either GA3 or NAA caused an appreciable increase in acid content in the juice, but decreased the other determined constituents, except vitamin C, which increased.

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Benjamin L. Campbell, Robert G. Nelson, Robert C. Ebel, and William A. Dozier

For most grocery stores, external quality standards require that premium mandarins be orange, unblemished, and large. Thus, for consumers to differentiate among the premium mandarins on any dimension other than price, additional positioning attributes must be evaluated. This study considered consumer preferences for price ($2.18/kg, $4.39/kg, or $15.41/kg), packaging (1.36 kg of loose fruit, 1.36-kg bag, 2.27-kg box, or 0.23-kg clamshell with peeled fruit sections), type of mandarin (clementine, satsuma, tangerine), shelf life from the day of purchase (3, 14, or 31 days), and vitamin C content (with or without a label stating high in vitamin C). A conjoint survey was conducted in four grocery stores located in Birmingham and Montgomery, Ala. In total, 289 respondents used a 7-point intention-to-buy scale to rate photographs of 16 product profiles. Six market segments were identified, based on maximal similarity of preferences within each segment and maximal differences between segments. A simulation was conducted of the effect that an introduction of peeled-and-sectioned satsumas would have on the market share and gross revenue of other mandarins. This product showed great potential, but should be offered in a product mix that includes the loose form as well. Labeling for vitamin C was preferred by all segments, but did not contribute much to the intention-to-buy rating. Awareness and recognition of satsumas needs to be addressed in promotional campaigns. The longest shelf life was the first choice of almost half the respondents.

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Celso L. Moretti, Steven A. Sargent, Donald J. Huber, Adonai G. Calbo, and Rolf Puschmann

`Solar Set' tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) were harvested at the mature-green stage of development and treated with 50 μL·L-1 ethylene at 20 °C. Breaker-stage fruit were dropped from 40 cm onto a solid surface to induce internal bruising and held along with undropped fruit at 20 °C. At the ripe stage, pericarp, locule, and placental tissues were analyzed for soluble sugars, vitamin C, pigments, titratable acidity, soluble solids content, pericarp electrolyte leakage, extractable polygalacturonase activity, and locule tissue consistency. Bruising significantly affected chemical composition and physical properties of pericarp and locule tissues, but not placental tissue. For bruised locule tissue, carotenoids, vitamin C, and titratable acidity were 37%, 15%, and 15%, lower, respectively, than unbruised fruit. For bruised pericarp tissue, vitamin C content was 16% lower than for unbruised tissue, whereas bruising increased electrolyte leakage and extractable polygalacturonase activity by 25% and 33%, respectively. Evidence of abnormal ripening following impact bruising was confined to locule and pericarp tissues and may be related to the disruption of cell structure and altered enzyme activity.

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O. Smith-Kayoae, V.O. Agbeja, A.O. Denton, and A. Aliyu

The development of a natural base for beverage products covers key steps including raw materials identification and sourcing, process development, product testing an market introduction. Agege 1 - a widespread sweet orange cultivar was compared with Parson Brown sweet orange type in the production of concentrated juice (approximate 30° Brix). Yield for Agege 1 was 14-16% while Parson Brown had 9-11% based on the processing modules adopted. Analysis of samples showed 40-110 millgram percent and 125-350 microgram percent for vitamins C and A respectively. Sensory testing revealed that concentrated juice for Agege 1 had superior appearance characteristics particularly in terms of color.

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Lin Shen* and Jiping Sheng

Chinese Winter Jujube (Zizyphus jujuba Mill.) is a kind of new fresh consumed jujube fruit with high quality originated in China, but its postharvest shelf-life is short at room temperature (often 7 days). A study was conducted to determine the effect on 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) on changes in ethylene production, respiration rate, firmness, electrolyte leakage and vitamin C. Chinese Winter Jujube fruits harvested at half-red stage, were randomized into rigid, vented containers (0.5 m3; n = 5), treated with 1 μL·L-1 for 12h at room temperature (20 ± 2 °C), then stored at 20 °C. Fruits treated with 1-MCP had significant lower ethylene production, it showed 21% lower (0.128 μL·kg-1 per hour) at 8th day. Respiration rate had no significant difference between treated and control during the 12d storage. Firmness of treated fruits was from 15.4% to 26.3% higher than that of control, while the electrolyte leakage was from 12.2% to 27.4% lower than that of control. The content of vitamin C by 1-MCP treatment was 11.2% higher than control at the last day of storage (368 mg/100 g). The results indicated that 1-MCP had positive results on maintaining postharvest shelf-life of half-red stage of Chinese Winter Jujube fruit.

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Floyd M. Woods, William A. Dozier, Robert C. Ebel, Raymond Thomas, Monte Nesbitt, Bryan S. Wilkins, and David G. Himelrick

Changes in fruit quality attributes and antioxidative properties from six cultivars of thornless blackberries (Rubus sp.) (`Apache', `Arapaho', `Chester', `Loch Ness', `Navaho', and `Triple Crown') during four different ripening stages (red, mottled, shiny-black, and dull-black) were determined under Alabama growing conditions. Berry fruit samples were evaluated for pH, titratable acidity, total soluble solids, TSS/TA ratio, soluble sugars, vitamin C (reduced, oxidized and total), and antioxidant capacity (measured as trolox equivalent antioxidant capacity, TEAC). Significant variation among cultivars were noted in fruit quality attributes and antioxidative properties, which were influenced by maturity at harvest. An increase in fruit pH concomitant with a decline in titratable acidity (TA) was observed during ripening for all cultivars. Total soluble solids (TSS) values increased from 5.7% to 11.6%, with associated TSS/TA ratio values ranging from 11.92 to 63.56 in ripening fruit. Highest reducing and total sugar content were contained in dull-black fruit. Vitamin C content either declined or remained unchanged with ripening, and the pattern was dependent on cultivar, maturity at harvest and form determined. In general, antioxidant activity declined between red and dull-black ripening stages. The results suggest that the TSS/TA ratio may provide the best maturity index in determining optimal eating quality and antioxidant capacity in terms of TEAC value the best indicator of optimal nutritional quality as influenced by maturity at harvest.

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Chris Frank, Eric Simonne, Robert Nelson, Amarat Simonne, and Bridget Behe

Most bell peppers produced and consumed in the United States are green in color. However, red, yellow, orange, brown, white, black, and purple bell pepper are also available. While bell pepper consumption has been increasing in the past 10 years, limited information is available on how color, retail price, and vitamin C influence consumer behavior. A conjoint analysis of 436 consumer responses showed that color (75%) and retail price (23%) were more important than vitamin C (3%) in shaping consumer purchase decision. Six consumer segments were identified. Segments II to V preferred green bell pepper, while segments I and VI favored the orange and brown color, respectively. Demographic variables were not good predictors of segment membership. However, previous purchases of bell pepper significantly affected the probability of membership in at least one segment. These results suggest that while green is the preferred color, a market exists for orange, red, and yellow peppers. Results on price sensitivity suggest that profits at the retail level are likely to increase by increasing the price of green peppers, and decresing that of the colored ones.

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Celso L. Moretti, Steven A. Sargent, Donald J. Huber, and Rolf Puschmann

Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum L.) fruits, cv. Solarset, were harvested at the mature-green stage and treated with 50 μL/L ethylene at 20C. Breaker fruits (<10% red coloration) were dropped from 40 cm onto a smooth, solid surface and held along with undropped fruits at 20°C and 85% relative humidity. At table-ripe stage, pericarp, placental, and locular tissue were individually excised and analyzed for total carotenoids, total soluble sugars, soluble solids content, titratable acidity, density (locule tissue), polygalacturonase activity, and electrolyte efflux (pericarp tissue). Internal bruising caused by impact forces significantly affected pericarp and locule tissues, but not placental tissue. For bruised locule tissue, total carotenoids content decreased by 37.1%, vitamin C content by 15.6%, and titratable acidity by 15.3% as compared to control. However, density was increased by 3.0%. For bruised pericarp tissue, vitamin C content decreased by 16.5%, while polygalacturonase activity and electrolyte efflux increased by 33.3% and 24.8%, respectively. The development of abnormal ripening following an impact was confined to locule and pericarp tissues and appears to be related to the disruption of cellular structure and stimulation of enzymic activity.