|Authors: ||P.V. Mahajan, M.J. Sousa-Gallagher|
|Keywords: ||O2 consumption, CO2 production, packaging, modified atmosphere, fresh-cut|
Fresh fruit and vegetables present a unique challenge since these products continue to respire even after harvesting, resulting in a shelf life which is inversely proportional to the respiration rate.
This study aimed to analyse the respiration rate of mixed fresh-cut fruit salad.
The experiment was designed according to a simplex lattice method with three types of fruits (strawberry, pineapple chunks and apple slices). The total mass fractions of the three fruits in any given mixture was always unity.
The three products were mixed in varying proportions according to a simplex lattice design and the respiration rate was measured at 5°C. The respiration rate varied from 4.1 to 16.4 mL of CO2 kg-1 h with a maximum value observed for strawberry, followed by apple slices and then pineapple chunks.
Each individual fruit had a significant effect on the overall respiration rate of fruit salad.
The binary mix of strawberry and pineapple showed a negative and significant impact whereas the ternary mix showed a positive impact on the respiration rate of fruit salad.
The simplex lattice model developed, provided a good prediction of respiration rate of mixed fruit salad and could be applied to any other mixed fruits or vegetables once the respiration rate of the individual components is known.
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