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M. Joseph Ahrens

Fresh, peeled, whole baby carrots are fast becoming the driving force in sales of fresh carrots. In 1991, 200 million tons were marketed to food service and retail outlets. “Peeled whole baby carrots” are mature carrots cut to 5 cm lengths and peeled in a modified potato peeler. Two problems have developed which are limiting the expansion of this market: 1) the product as currently packed develops a slimey rot in 10 days and 2) a “white blush” forms on the exposed surface of the product after 5 days.

Tests on the atmosphere of the bag indicated that the product was generating a low O2 environment, causing the growth of anaerobic rots. Evaluations of several film materials were undertaken to find a formulation which would provide an O2 level above 5% and CO2 below 7%, a level above which some cultivars are injured. Sucrose ester and cellulose based edible films and anti-oxidants were applied to the product to help eliminate white blush, which could be the product of dehydration or lignin formation.

A cellulose-base edible film supplied from the USDA and a mineral impregnated single ply low density polyethylene 1.5 mil bag were selected as the optimum packaging combination. Storage at 5C was improved to 50 days, with white blush and decay greatly reduced. Studies on the logistics of the edible film application are continuing.

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Phillip Joy, Rajasekaran Lada, Angus Ells, and Brian Williams

The individually quick frozen “baby” carrot industry is growing. Crack development during freezing (CDF) has recently become a quality issue. There is little scientific information available on the causes of CDF. Studies were initiated to determine genetic resistance for CDF and to identify crack-resistant varieties. Ten varieties and breeding lines (Columbia, HMX-0331, Sugarsnax, Sweet Bites, Tasty Peel, Top Cut, Trinity, XCR-0124, XCR-9650, and XCR-9840) were grown under the same field conditions, harvested identically, and processed. Samples were removed after a quick freeze tunnel and tested immediately for membrane stability using electrical conductivity (EC/g) and a membrane injury index. Percentage cracked, the length, width, and depth of cracks were also measured. Another set of samples were placed in freezer storage at –10 °C for 8 weeks and tested again for the same parameters. EC/g and membrane injury indexes showed significant interactions between variety and length of storage time. Crack length, width, and depth were significantly higher in XCR-9650 and XCR-9840, while Trinity had the smallest dimensions. Crack depths after week 8 in freezer storage were also significantly higher (0.30 cm) than those at week 0 (0.21 cm). Finally, percent cracked was also dependent on the variety and length of storage time. Trinity had the lowest percentage of cracked pieces (16%), whereas XCR-9650 (70%) had the highest percentage of visible cracking. Freezer storage time also played a role in CDF, since cracked percent significantly increased by 4% over the 8 weeks. Our results clearly reveal that there are differences in CDF among varieties. Among all, Trinity had the highest resistance to cracking, comparable to all the varieties except XCR-9650 and XCR-9840.

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Carlos A. Lazcano, Frank J. Dainello, Leonard M. Pike, Marvin E. Miller, Lynn Brandenberger, and Larry R. Baker

Carrot (Daucus carota Mill. cv. Caropak) was studied under four population densities, and three numbers of seed lines per bed, and was harvested under three root size harvest parameters. Four phases (cutting, grading, peeling, and marketable yield) in the cut-and-peel baby carrot process were evaluated. Root length was most desirable when plots were harvested when 25% to 35% of the roots measured > 2 cm in diameter. Roots were longest (14.7 cm) in the treatments containing six seed lines per bed. The harvest criteria of 25% to 35% root diameter >2 cm also produced the highest fresh mass (48.1 t·ha-1), and the highest cut and graded mass (37.7 and 32.3 t·ha-1, respectively). A population density of 321 plants/m2 produced the highest fresh and cut mass. Percent cut waste (21.6% crowns and tips) was not affected by root size at harvest, but percent graded waste was lowest (14.2%) when plants were harvested at the greatest root size. Four seed lines per bed produced the highest graded (18.4%), and total waste (61.2%), but not cut waste. The lowest total waste, estimated at 59.7% and the highest projeced marketable yield (19.4 t·ha-1) occurred when roots were harvested using the 25% to 35% root diameter >2-cm parameter. Total waste and marketable yield were obtained using a fixed waste value of 40% in the peeling phase (peeling, polishing, and grading before packing). This percentage could vary depending on the equipment specifications and quality control of a given processing facility. Root size at harvest proved to be the main factor affecting projected marketable yield of cut-and-peel baby carrots at the population densities used in this study.

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Carlos A. Lazcano, Frank J. Dainello, Leonard M. Pike, Marvin E. Miller, Lynn Brandenberger, and Larry R. Baker

Carrot (Daucus carota Mill. cv. Caropak) was studied under four population densities, and three numbers of seed lines per bed, and was harvested under three root size harvest parameters. Four phases (cutting, grading, peeling, and marketable yield) in the cut-and-peel baby carrot process were evaluated. Root length was most desirable when plots were harvested when 25% to 35% of the roots measured >2 cm in diameter. Roots were longest (14.7 cm) in the treatments containing six seed lines per bed. The harvest criteria of 25% to 35% root diameter >2 cm also produced the highest fresh mass (48.1 t·ha-1), and the highest cut and graded mass (37.7 and 32.3 t·ha-1, respectively). A population density of 321 plants/m2 produced the highest fresh and cut mass. Percent cut waste (21.6% crowns and tips) was not affected by root size at harvest, but percent graded waste was lowest (14.2%) when plants were harvested at the greatest root size. Four seed lines per bed produced the highest graded (18.4%), and total waste (61.2%), but not cut waste. The lowest total waste, estimated at 59.7% and the highest projected marketable yield (19.4 t·ha-1) occurred when roots were harvested using the 25% to 35% root diameter >2-cm parameter. Total waste and marketable yield were obtained using a fixed waste value of 40% in the peeling phase (peeling, polishing, and grading before packing). This percentage could vary depending on the equipment specifications and quality control of a given processing facility. Root size at harvest proved to be the main factor affecting projected marketable yield of cut-and-peel baby carrots at the population densities used in this study.

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Milton E. McGiffen Jr. and Edmund J. Ogbuchiekwe

Poor root color is a recurring problem in carrot (Daucus carota L.) production. Consumers prefer dark orange carrots that are high in carotene. However, unfavorable environmental conditions and certain production practices can lead to light orange roots with low carotene content. Growers sometimes refer to this as “white root.” No one has clearly established the causes or cures for this disorder. Several environmental factors are known to affect the color of carrots, but to date there is no practical treatment. High-density planting often reduces carotene content. Field studies were conducted in the 1995-96 and 1996-97 winter growing seasons to determine if foliar applications of ethephon would improve carrot color, carotene content, and yield. Carotene content and root color increased as the number of applications or the amount of ethephon applied with each application increased. Root weight was not significantly affected.

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Ma. Teresa Lafuente, Gloria López-Gálvez, Marita Cantwell, and Shang Fa Yang

Ethylene-induced formation of isocoumarin was characterized in relation to ethylene-enhanced respiration in whole or cut carrots (Daucus carota L.). Ethylene concentrations (0.1 to 5 ppm) and temperatures (1 to 15C) that increased respiration also favored a more rapid formation of isocoumarin (8-hydroxy-3-methyl-6-methoxy-3,4-dihydro-isocoumarin). Exposing mature carrots to 0.5 ppm C2H4 for 14 days at 1 or 5C resulted in isocoumarin contents of 20 and 40 mg/100 g peel, respectively. These levels were easily detected as a bitter flavor in the intact carrot roots. Immature carrots formed higher levels of isocoumarin than mature carrots; 180 mg/100 g peel were detected in young carrots stored 14 days at 5C in air containing 0.5 ppm C2H4. Freshly harvested carrots exposed to 5 ppm C2H4 accumulated 4-fold higher isocoumarin levels than those formed by carrots stored 30 days at 5C before exposure to C2H4. An atmosphere of 100% O2 potentiated the effect of C2H4 on isocoumarin formation, resulting in a 5-fold increase over that found in carrots treated with C2H4 in air. A storage atmosphere of 0.5 ppm C2H4 in 1% O2 resulted in isocoumarin levels about one-half those attained in 0.5 ppm C2H4 in air. Sliced, cut, or dropped carrots exposed to C2H4 showed greater isocoumarin accumulation rates than intact uninjured carrots. Peeled baby carrots, however, had little capacity to form isocoumarin. In general, the more rapid the respiratory rise in response to C2H4, the more rapidly isocoumarin accumulated. The greater the respiratory response to ethylene, the higher the level of isocoumarin formed.

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Irwin L. Goldman

million marketing campaign to promote baby carrots as junk food. The campaign attempts to break into the $18 billion snack food industry by “Taking a page out of junk food’s playbook and applying it to baby carrots” ( Horovitz, 2010 ). Motts has also

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Claire H. Luby, Rachael Vernon, Hiroshi A. Maeda, and Irwin L. Goldman

frozen sliced carrots, Clear Value whole canned sliced carrots, S&W canned julienne carrots, Whole Foods organic baby carrots, Copps fresh whole carrots, Whole Foods organic fresh whole carrots, Earth’s Best organic baby food with carrots, and Fresh

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Philipp W. Simon

an additional avenue to develop new products for consumers to increase intake. Vegetable juices have been demonstrated as one effective way to stimulate intake ( Shenoy et al., 2010 ). “Lightly processed” baby carrots, celery sticks, pepper strips and

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Ambani R. Mudau, Puffy Soundy, Hintsa T. Araya, and Fhatuwani N. Mudau

. 91 96 103 Leceta, I. Molinaro, S. Guerrero, P. Kerry, J.P. de la Caba, K. 2015 Quality attributes of map packaged ready-to-eat baby carrots by using chitosan-based coatings Postharvest Biol. Technol. 100 142 150 Mampholo, B.M. Sivakumar, D. Beukes, M