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  • Author or Editor: James P. Mattheis x
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The objectives of this study were to characterize and quantify postharvest losses of apples under commercial conditions in Santa Catarina state, Brazil. Two experiments were conducted using ‘Gala’ and ‘Fuji’ apples. The first experiment was to characterize and quantify the most important causes of loss of fruit treated or not treated with 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) then held in controlled atmosphere (CA) storage. This experiment was conducted in commercial storage facilities from 2007 to 2010. In each year, 10 samples of ≈380 kg each for ‘Gala’ and 400 kg each for ‘Fuji’ were collected from bins of commercially harvested fruit from each of 15 ‘Gala’ and 17 ‘Fuji’ orchards. Half of the samples from each orchard were treated with 1-MCP at harvest. Fruit were stored in CA, at 0.7 °C, for 150 to 300 days. After storage, one subsample of 100 disorder-free apples were selected from each sample and held at 22 °C for 7 days to simulate shelf-life conditions. The fruit were analyzed after CA storage and shelf life for the incidence of disorders. The second experiment was conducted in 2011 to identify the main fungi causing decay during storage. In this study, apples were stored in 10 commercial CA storage rooms at 0.7 °C for 180 to 240 days. After storage, fruit with decay symptoms were collected at the commercial sorting line. A total of 10 samples of 100 decayed apples were taken throughout the sorting period for each cultivar and storage room. The fungal decays were identified by visual symptoms on each fruit. Total apple losses during storage varied from 3.9% to 12.1% for ‘Gala’ and 6.6% to 8.4% for ‘Fuji’, depending on the year and 1-MCP treatment. During storage, deterioration caused by fungal decay was ≈60% and 80% of total losses for ‘Gala’ and ‘Fuji’, respectively. During shelf life, additional losses caused by fungal decay ranged from 8.4% to 17.6% for ‘Gala’ and 12.4% to 27.2% for ‘Fuji’, depending on the year. Senescent breakdown and superficial scald were the major physiological disorders. 1-MCP treatment had no effect on losses due to decay. Bull’s-eye rot, blue mold, gray mold, and alternaria rot were the most prevalent fungal decay symptoms, accounting for 52%, 27%, 9% and 10% of ‘Gala’ losses and 42%, 25%, 18% and 5% of ‘Fuji’ losses, respectively. Sources of variability for losses among years and orchards is discussed.

Open Access

`Gala' apples [Malus silvestris (L.) var. domestica (Borkh.) Mansf.] were treated with ethanol vapor (5 mL·kg-1 fruit for 24 hours at 25 °C), heat (4 days at 38 °C and >98% RH), or 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP; 1 or 0.625 μL·L-1 for 18 hours at 20 °C) before processing into slices, then dipped in anti-browning solutions or coatings, drained, and packaged in perforated polyethylene bags. Residual effects of pretreatments on fresh-cut slice physiological and quality attributes were investigated during storage for up to 19 days at 5.5 °C. Ethylene production was reduced by ethanol, heat, and 1-MCP pretreatments, while ethanol and heat also reduced slice respiration. Heat and 1-MCP pretreatments inhibited slice texture changes, while ethanol had no effect on instrumental texture measurements but reduced sensory firmness. Ethanol pretreatment increased the contents of ethanol and ethyl esters in slices but reduced acidity, while heat reduced both acidity and aroma volatile levels. Both ethanol and heat pretreatments led to lower sensory scores for apple flavor and ethanol-pretreated slices also received higher scores for altered flavor, although all scores were in the acceptable range. Slice acidity was best maintained by 1-MCP pretreatment. Shelf life based on appearance was 15 to 16 days for ethanol-pretreated slices and 12 days for heat-pretreated slices compared to that of control, which was 8 to 9 days, while 1-MCP pretreatment promoted decay development on the cut surface, which reduced the shelf life to 7 to 8 days. Obvious separations were determined between ethanol- and heat-pretreated slices and untreated control by canonical discriminant analysis of headspace volatile levels determined by GC and electronic nose. Therefore, pretreatments with ethanol and heat are very effective for prolonging visual shelf life at the expense of aroma quality.

Free access

The effects of growing and storage locations and storage temperature on soft scald incidence of `Honeycrisp' apples were examined. In 1999 and 2000, fruits were produced at five different locations, harvested at two different times, and stored at two or five different storage locations. In 1999, fruits were stored at 0 or 2 °C. Soft scald was only observed in fruits from one growing location and primarily at 0 °C. More soft scald was observed from the second harvest than from the first. Scalded fruits were preclimacteric as determined by ethylene production rate, whereas fruits from the other locations were postclimacteric. In 2000, fruits from four of the growing locations developed soft scald, and soft scald incidence was not related to ethylene production rate. Scalded fruits had higher concentrations of phosphorus, boron, and magnesium, and lower concentrations of manganese than unaffected fruit. Development of soft scald was not related to fruit ethylene production rates, was dependent on growing location, increased with later harvest, and may be related to fruit elemental content.

Free access