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Laura Puig, Diane M. Varga, Paul M. Chen and Eugene A. Mielke

`Bartlett' pears (Pyrus communis L.) were harvested at commercial maturity (average flesh firmness of 18 lb), stored at 30F for 0, 2, or 4 weeks, and then placed into a ripening room at 68F with or without ethylene to evaluate ripening activities. Pears that were stored in air at 30F for <4 weeks did not ripen after 7 days at 68F in an ethylene-free (no-ethylene) room. These pears ripened normally and uniformly after 7 days at 68F in a room enriched with 100 ppm ethylene (yes-ethylene). `Bartlett' pears that were stored in air at 30F for 4 weeks ripened normally after 5 days at 68F in the yes-ethylene room or 6 days at 68F in the no-ethylene room. The amount of cans produced per ton of fresh processed pears can be maximized most economically by exposing freshly harvested `Bartlett' pears to 100 ppm ethylene at 68F for 7 days before canning.