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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 1195: VI International Symposium on Persimmon

Processing of fresh-cut 'Rojo Brillante' persimmon: strategies for minimizing quality loss

Authors:   M.B. Pérez-Gago, M. Mateos, E. Sanchís
Keywords:   antibrowning agents, edible coatings, enzymatic browning, firmness, shelf life
DOI:   10.17660/ActaHortic.2018.1195.25
Persimmon (Diospyros kaki L.) 'Rojo Brillante' is an astringent variety characterized by excellent color, size, sensory characteristics and nutritional properties. Its production in Spain has grown substantially in the past decade due to application of high concentrations of CO2 to remove astringency while preserving firmness. The technology has also increased this variety's potential as a fresh-cut commodity. However, physical damage during processing can degrade fruit color and firmness and increase susceptibility to microbial spoilage, significantly reducing shelf life. The future of this variety as a fresh-cut commodity depends on developing improved post-processing technologies to maintain fresh quality and meet market expectations. Techniques such as antioxidants, modified atmosphere storage (MAP) and edible coatings have been investigated to extend the shelf life of fresh-cut 'Rojo Brillante' persimmon during storage at 5°C. Tissue browning could be controlled by 1% ascorbic acid (AA) or 1% citric acid (CA), but these acidic solutions reduced fruit firmness. Selecting fruits with high firmness and then adding 1% CaCl2 helped maintain firmness of fresh-cut 'Rojo Brillante' persimmons treated with acidic anti-browning agents such as CA. The combined anti-browning treatment CA-CaCl2, alone or incorporated into edible coatings, proved effective to control enzymatic browning of fresh-cut persimmon. Hydroxylpropyl methylcellulose- or pectin-based coatings were most effective at extending commercial shelf life. The optimized treatment helped improve the visual quality and overall acceptability of fresh-cut 'Rojo Brillante' persimmon, extending the limit of commercialization to a nine-day storage period at 5°C without negatively affecting the overall flavor.

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