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Cynthia L. Barden

High-quality processing and fresh market cultivars are critical to the Mid-Atlantic apple industry. Dual purpose cultivars such as `Ginger Gold' and `Nittany' are of particular interest. `Ginger Gold' is an early cultivar harvested in mid to late August and is of interest to processors in the area. Early cultivars typically do not store well. The at-harvest quality is high and we have initiated studies to determine if quality of `Ginger Gold' can be maintained in storage for an acceptable length of time. Apples harvested 25 Aug. were placed in three storage atmospheres: air, 3% O2 + <2% CO2, or 0.7% O2 + 1% CO2, all at 0°C. At harvest the firmness was 85 N with soluble solids concentration (SSC) of 12.6. After 4 months of storage both CA treatments maintained firmness better than the air control treatment. SSC and decay were not different among storage treatments (SS = 13.5 and % decay = 5%–8%). Data indicate that `Ginger Gold' can be stored for some time in CA and that low-oxygen storage may be beneficial. `Nittany' apples harvested 6 Oct. were placed in 2 storage atmospheres - 3% O2 + <2% CO2 or 0.7% O2 + 1% CO2. At harvest the firmness was 85 N and the SSC was 12.7. After 6 months in storage the fruit in low O2 were firmer than in standard CA. The SSC was 14.5 and decay 6% for all samples.

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Cynthia L. Barden and William J. Bramlage

During the harvest season apples ripen and develop scald resistance. In the Northeast they usually are also exposed to cool temperatures as they mature and ripen. Experiments were conducted to study the effects of cool temperature, light and maturity on the endogenous antioxidants and subsequent scald development in Cortland and Delicious apples. Total lipid-soluble antioxidant activity in apple peel at harvest generally increased as scald incidence after storage decreased. Yet, α tocopherol, ascorbic acid and total water-soluble reducing capacity were not closely related to scald development. The absence of light (bagged fruit) decreased all measured antioxidants and increased scald development. However, ethephon applied in mid-August to induce ripening increased the levels of these antioxidants but had little effect on scald incidence in the absence of cool temperatures (hours <10°C). Cool temperatures, which decreased scald susceptibility, increased lipid-soluble antioxidant activity but had little influence on the other measured antioxidants. These data suggest that the endogenous antioxidants may be only partly responsible for natural scald resistance.

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Cynthia L. Barden and W. J. Bramlage

Superficial scald development on apples is related to preharvest environmental conditions, perhaps through effects on endogenous antioxidant concentrations In 1989 we examined effects of maturity, light, and preharvest temperatures (< 10°C) on endogenous antioxidant levels in the fruit at harvest and on scald development after long-term storage in 0°C air. Cortland apple trees were sprayed with 500 ppm ethephon 1 month before normal harvest to create maturity differences. Fruit on other Cortland trees were bagged 1 month prior to harvest to reduce light interception. Samples also were harvested from other Cortland trees after exposures to different numbers of hours < 10°C, Hours < 10°C before harvest were negatively correlated to scald development. Ethephon treatment decreased scald incidence, and bagging increased it, The total lipid-soluble antioxidant activity increased with increasing hours < 10°C and with ethephon treatment, while bagging of fruit slightly decreased this antioxidant activity. To better understand the relationships between preharvest factors and antioxidant levels, individual antioxidants, including ascorbic acid, α tocopherol, anthocyanins and glutathione, are being analyzed.

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Cynthia L. Barden and W. J. Bramlage

Superficial scald development on apples is related to preharvest environmental conditions, perhaps through effects on endogenous antioxidant concentrations In 1989 we examined effects of maturity, light, and preharvest temperatures (< 10°C) on endogenous antioxidant levels in the fruit at harvest and on scald development after long-term storage in 0°C air. Cortland apple trees were sprayed with 500 ppm ethephon 1 month before normal harvest to create maturity differences. Fruit on other Cortland trees were bagged 1 month prior to harvest to reduce light interception. Samples also were harvested from other Cortland trees after exposures to different numbers of hours < 10°C, Hours < 10°C before harvest were negatively correlated to scald development. Ethephon treatment decreased scald incidence, and bagging increased it, The total lipid-soluble antioxidant activity increased with increasing hours < 10°C and with ethephon treatment, while bagging of fruit slightly decreased this antioxidant activity. To better understand the relationships between preharvest factors and antioxidant levels, individual antioxidants, including ascorbic acid, α tocopherol, anthocyanins and glutathione, are being analyzed.

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Cynthia L. Barden and William J. Bramlage

Apples generally become less susceptible to scald as the season progresses and the fruit ripen. However, ripening effects may be confounded with effects of low temperature. Over 3 seasons we tested interactive effects of hrs < 10°C and ripening on scald susceptibility on Cortland apples. Ripening was induced by 500 ppm ethephon. In 1989, ethephon advanced ripening, increased endogenous antioxidant concns, and reduced scald incidence by 30% when 62 hrs <10°C had occurred before harvest. In 1990 no hrs <10°C had accumulated at harvest. Ethephon increased endogenous antioxidants and advanced ripening, but had little effect on scald development (>90% incidence). Low temps during ripening may be needed for ripening to induce scald resistance. In 1991, ethephon was applied once to apples at 6 different stages of development. Fruit were harvested a week later, after 14-156 hrs <10°C. Ethephon advanced ripening at the first 4 applications, but at the first 3 insufficient cool temperatures had occurred to expect scald reduction unless ripening had an independent effect. Results will be presented and discussed.

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Cynthia L. Barden and Larry A. Hull

`Golden Delicious', `Delicious', and `York Imperial' apples (Malus ×domestica Borkh.) with various amounts of tufted apple bud moth (TABM) [Platynota idaeusalis (Walker)] feeding injury were evaluated for quality at harvest and following storage in air and controlled atmosphere. In addition, apples were artificially injured during two seasons to mimic TABM feeding injury. There was little or no effect of natural TABM injury on the quality of apples in many experiments. At harvest, firmness was not influenced by natural TABM injury, soluble solids concentration (SSC) was increased in three of 11 experiments, and starch levels decreased in two of 11 experiments. These results indicate a slight advancement of maturity of injured fruit. More severely injured fruit tended to have more decay after storage than fruit with less injury. Some injury, especially first brood injury, up to ≈7 to 10 mm2 surface damage, can be tolerated without compromising storage quality of processing apples. However, severe injury (>79 mm2) can increase decay. Second brood injury, whether caused by natural feeding of TABM or through artificial means, usually caused a higher incidence of decay than first brood injury. Artificial injury imposed close to harvest led to more decay in storage than did similar injury imposed earlier.

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Cynthia L. Barden and William J. Bramlage

Antioxidants are believed to protect against the oxidation of α-farnesene to conjugated trienes in apple (Malus domestica, Borkh.) peel, thus providing resistance against superficial scald development. We conducted three experiments in which apples were a) harvested weekly, during which they were exposed to increasing hours at <10C during ripening; b) induced to ripen with no hours at <10C by applying ethephon; and c) enclosed in paper bags as they ripened. Inducing ripening with ethephon increased total water-soluble reducing compounds and percentage inhibition of lipid oxidation of peel extracts, increased concentrations of α-tocopherol, carotenoids, and ascorbic acid in peel, but only slightly reduced scald. Delayed harvests increased all of these antioxidants except ascorbic acid and greatly reduced scald development. Bagging fruit before ripening decreased α-tocopherol, carotenoid, and ascorbic acid concentrations, decreased total water-soluble reducing compounds, and increased scald development. We conclude that changes in these antioxidants probably are affected more by ripening and light intensity than by low temperature before harvest. Chemical name used: (2-chloroethyl)phosphonic acid (ethephon).

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Cynthia L. Barden and William J. Bramlage

`Cortland' and `Delicious' apples (Malus domestics Borkh.) were exposed to an increasing number of hours below 10C before sequential harvests in each of 3 years. In separate experiments, `Cortland' apples were a) sprayed with ethephon to induce ripening at moderate temperatures and b) bagged in late August to produce ripening at low light intensities. Scald development was determined after 4 to 5 months of storage at 0C. Significant negative relationships with scald development occurred for hours below 10C, harvest date, and ripening indexes at harvest; however, the regressions with percentage scald were stronger for hours below 10C than for either harvest date or ripening. When ethephon-induced ripening occurred in the absence of low temperature, scald development decreased only slightly. Bagging fruit significantly delayed the loss of scald susceptibility with increasing hours below 10C. We conclude that low temperature was most responsible for rapid, substantial loss of scald susceptibility, and that light and ripening were secondary factors in this loss, interacting with the effects of temperature. Chemical name used: (2-chloroethyl)phosphonic acid (ethephon).

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George M. Greene II, Cynthia L. Barden and Laura Lehman-Salada

York Imperial is an important processing apple cultivar in the mid-Atlantic region and is often stored for up to eleven months. This experiment was designed to further examine the optimum CA storage conditions for this cultivar. Six orchards were used as statistical blocks. The factorial experiment was set up with 2 temperatures (0 and 2C), 2 oxygen (1 and 2%) and 3 carbon dioxide concentrations (2,3.5 and 5%). Sample size was 20 fruit at all analysis periods (at harvest, 4, 6, and 8 months). The apples were stored in a recirculating CA research facility and evaluated for firmness, soluble solids and weight loss. In the overall statistical analysis, orchard blocks, harvest dates and storage times significantly influenced all 3 quality parameters. Differences between blocks at harvest were substantial with firmness ranging from 9.5 to 11.3 kg and the soluble solids ranging from 12.8 to 14.8%. At the third storage removal (8 months), low oxygen increased firmness and decreased weight loss during storage while at the lower temperature, apples were firmer, had higher soluble solids and less weight loss than at the higher temperature. Although statistically significant, the differences may not be commercially important Block differences were generally maintained throughout storage.

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Robert A. Saftner, Judith A. Abbott, William S. Conway and Cynthia L. Barden

Air heat, methyl jasmonate dip, and vapor treatments with the ethylene action inhibitor 1-methylcyclopropene (MCP) were used to evaluate their effects on ripening-related characteristics and susceptibility to fungal decay in `Golden Delicious' apples (Malus ×domestica Borkh.) through 5 months of storage at 0 °C and ripening at 20 °C for 7 days. Preclimacteric fruit were treated with MCP vapor at a concentration of 1 μL•L-1 for 18 h at 20 °C, 38 °C air for 4 days, methyl jasmonate dip at concentrations of 10-5 and 10-4 for 3 min at 20 °C, combinations thereof, or left untreated before storage in air at 0 °C. One set of untreated fruit was stored in a controlled atmosphere of 1.5 O2 and 2.5% CO2 at 0 °C. The MCP treatment and CA storage delayed ripening, as indicated by better retention of green peel color and flesh firmness, and the reduced respiration, ethylene production rates, and volatile (both flavor- and superficial scald-associated) levels that were observed upon transferring the fruit to 20 °C. The MCP treatment followed by air storage delayed ripening more than CA storage. The heat treatment also delayed ripening but hastened skin yellowing. While methyl jasmonate dips had no significant effect on ripening, they were the only treatments used that reduced the incidence of postharvest decay and discolored the surface of some fruit. The results indicate that MCP may provide an effective alternative to CA for maintaining quality during cold storage and ripening. The results also indicate that methyl jasmonate dip treatment may reduce postharvest decay of fruit while maintaining fruit quality.