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Jinwook Lee, In-Kyu Kang, Jacqueline F. Nock and Christopher B. Watkins

The effects of preharvest and postharvest treatments of 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) in combination or alone on fruit quality and the incidence of physiological disorders during storage of ‘Fuji’ apples [Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill var. domestica (Borkh.) Mansf.] at 20 and 0.5 °C were investigated. Preharvest 1-MCP (Harvista) treatments were applied 4 or 10 days before harvest (DBH), and then fruit were either untreated or treated with 1-MCP (SmartFresh) postharvest. Fruit were stored at 20 °C for up to 4 weeks or at 0.5 °C for up to 36 weeks. At harvest, starch pattern indices and watercore incidence and severity were lower in fruit with preharvest 1-MCP treatment applied 10 DBH than in untreated fruit and in fruit treated 4 DBH. At 20 °C, the combination of preharvest and postharvest 1-MCP treatments reduced the internal ethylene concentration (IEC) more than preharvest 1-MCP treatment alone, but not to a greater extent than postharvest 1-MCP treatment alone. Greasiness and watercore were reduced more by the combination of preharvest and postharvest 1-MCP treatments than by either treatment alone. However, preharvest and postharvest 1-MCP treatments, in combination or alone, did not consistently affect flesh firmness, titratable acidity (TA), soluble solids concentration, color a* values, or incidences of flesh browning, core browning, and stem-end flesh browning. At 0.5 °C, the combination of preharvest and postharvest 1-MCP treatments inhibited IECs and maintained firmness and TA more than no treatment or preharvest 1-MCP treatment alone. However, there was a lesser extent of differences than there was with postharvest 1-MCP treatment alone. Incidences of physiological disorders were not consistently affected by the preharvest and postharvest 1-MCP treatments. Overall, the results suggested that the preharvest 1-MCP treatment positively affected fruit quality attributes compared with no treatment during shelf life and long-term cold storage, but not as effectively as a combination of preharvest and postharvest 1-MCP treatments.