Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Grape news: New treatment combination safe alternative to sulfur dioxide

16.04.2010
Hot water, rachis removal, modified atmosphere packaging combination preserves table grapes

Packaged fresh-cut grapes are becoming increasingly popular with consumers who like the convenience and health benefits of these ready-to-eat fruits.

To keep table grapes fresh and increase shelf life, scientists are seeking advanced techniques that provide healthy, safe alternatives to conventional packing methods.

Researchers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service (USDA ARS) have developed and tested an effective new technique that combines hot water treatment, rachis removal, and modified atmosphere packaging (MA) to extend the shelf life of table grapes.

Commercially packaged table grapes stored in clusters in perforated packaging have a short shelf life—typically 8 to 10 weeks—as a result of their exposure to the environment. Grape shelf life is often shortened by factors including fruit weight loss, stem browning, softening, shattering, and decay. Because of its effectiveness in delaying stem browning and decay, sulfur dioxide gas (SO2) is currently the treatment of choice in many countries for prolonging shelf life of grapes. There are disadvantages to sulfur dioxide use, however. The concentration of SO2 necessary to inhibit fungal growth may induce injuries in grape fruits and stems, and sulfite residues pose a health risk for some individuals. Applications of SO2 have been restricted in many countries, making it essential to identify safe, alternative technologies that effectively control fungal growth and assure high-quality fruit.

Yaguang Luo and William Conway from the USDS ARS, in collaboration with Liping Kou, Wu Ding, and Xinghua Liu from China's Northwest A&F University, recently published a report in HortScience that explored alternatives to sulfur dioxide for maintaining quality of table grapes, including various combinations of rachis removal, chlorinated wash, hot water treatment, and modified atmosphere packaging.

Grapes were prepared by cutting off the rachis 1 to 2 mm from the fruit or by keeping the clusters intact. After initial preparation, short-stem and cluster grapes were subjected to chlorinated wash and/or hot water (45ºC for 8 minutes) treatment and packaged in plastic trays sealed with a gas-permeable film. The treated grapes, as well as the commercially packed grapes in their original packages, were stored at 5ºC for up to 4 weeks.

According to the Kou, a visiting scientist from China and the study's lead researcher, the hot water treatment resulted in significantly higher oxygen retention and lower carbon dioxide accumulation in packages, firmer texture, higher overall visual quality, lower decay rate, and lower microbial populations than other treatments or commercially packed grapes. Grapes that were cut from the rachis and treated with hot water and chlorine maintained the highest quality for 4 weeks, with the least decay among all treatments. A chlorine prewash treatment significantly reduced microbial populations on cluster grapes and maintained better overall quality.

Kou concluded that "the combination of these treatments maintained excellent visual quality throughout the entire storage duration, whereas the commercially packaged grapes became decayed and their quality declined to a level that was unacceptable. The combination treatment was successful in reducing spoilage microbes, preventing dehydration, and delaying softening and senescence of grapes."

The complete study and abstract are available on the ASHS HortScience electronic journal web site: http://hortsci.ashspublications.org/cgi/content/abstract/44/7/1947

Founded in 1903, the American Society for Horticultural Science (ASHS) is the largest organization dedicated to advancing all facets of horticultural research, education, and application. More information at ashs.org

Michael W. Neff | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ashs.org

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Six-legged livestock -- sustainable food production
11.05.2017 | Faculty of Science - University of Copenhagen

nachricht Elephant Herpes: Super-Shedders Endanger Young Animals
04.05.2017 | Universität Zürich

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

Im Focus: Using graphene to create quantum bits

In the race to produce a quantum computer, a number of projects are seeking a way to create quantum bits -- or qubits -- that are stable, meaning they are not much affected by changes in their environment. This normally needs highly nonlinear non-dissipative elements capable of functioning at very low temperatures.

In pursuit of this goal, researchers at EPFL's Laboratory of Photonics and Quantum Measurements LPQM (STI/SB), have investigated a nonlinear graphene-based...

Im Focus: Bacteria harness the lotus effect to protect themselves

Biofilms: Researchers find the causes of water-repelling properties

Dental plaque and the viscous brown slime in drainpipes are two familiar examples of bacterial biofilms. Removing such bacterial depositions from surfaces is...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

Innovation 4.0: Shaping a humane fourth industrial revolution

17.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A new tool for discovering nanoporous materials

23.05.2017 | Materials Sciences

Two New Giants Discovered in Tiny Madagascar Rainforest

23.05.2017 | Life Sciences

Did you know that packaging is becoming intelligent through flash systems?

23.05.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>