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M.K. Upadhyaya and N.H. Furness

Surface area of cucumbers, carrots, parsnips, and beets was determined using the following non-destructive methods: Baugerod's method, Baugerod's method with inclusion of a factor correcting for substitution of weight for volume in the formula, and a novel image analysis method. Accuracy of the methods was ascertained by comparison with a direct shrink-wrap replica method of surface area measurement. Vegetables ranged in shape from cylindrical (cucumber and carrot) to conical (parsnip and beet). No difference in accuracy among methods of surface area determination was detected for carrots or beets. Baugerod's method and the image analysis technique differed significantly from the direct shrink-wrap replica technique for surface area determination of parsnips and cucumbers, respectively. Inclusion of a correction factor in Baugerod's method did not increase the accuracy of this method for any of the vegetables. The precision and repeatability of each method was determined by repeated measures analysis. Baugerod's method lost precision and repeatability for the conically shaped vegetables. Conversely, the shrink-wrap replica method lost precision and repeatability for the cylindrically shaped vegetables. The image analysis technique was precise and highly repeatable over the range of vegetable shapes. The development of a rapid, accurate, and precise non-destructive method of surface area measurement using image analysis techniques will provide a useful tool in the physiological study of vegetable products. Applicability of such a method over a range of vegetable shapes will be of additional value.

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N.H. Furness, A. Upadhyaya and M.K. Upadhyaya

Surface areas of differently shaped vegetables, namely beet (Beta vulgaris L.), cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.), carrot (Daucus carota L.), and parsnip (Pastinaca sativa L.) were determined by Baugerod's (a linear) method, a shrink-wrap replica method, and image analysis. Values obtained using these methods did not differ significantly for carrots and beets. Surface area values obtained using image analysis were higher than those obtained by Baugerod's method for parsnips (by 23.5%), and higher than Baugerod's and shrink-wrap replica methods for cucumbers (by 11.3% and 12.6%, respectively). A method was considered reproducible if surface area values from five measurements on the same product did not differ significantly (P ≤ 0.05). Surface area values for an individual product varied in the range of 4.7% for Baugerod's method for parsnips, and 6.6% for the shrink wrap replica method for carrots. No significant variation was observed for any of the vegetables when repeated measurements were made using the image analysis method. Image analysis offers rapidity, lack of adverse effect on produce, and the ability to collect and analyze data simultaneously. However, in absence of the necessary equipment for image analysis, Baugerod's method may be used for a product symmetrical around its central axis, after comparing it with a more direct procedure (e.g., shrink-wrap replica method).