|Authors: ||S. Mathe, S.Z. Tesfay, N. Mathaba, R.J. Blakey|
|Keywords: ||1-MCP, chilling severity, chroma, eye colour, hue angle and lightness|
Avocado is a highly perishable product, thus, requires technologies to retain quality.
Currently, the South African avocado industry uses cold transportation containers to preserve quality loss.
The industry also uses 1-methylcycopropene (1-MCP) to prevent soft landing and preserve fruit quality for distant markets.
In South Africa, 'Hass' avocado fruit accounts for the largest export percentage (40%), the fruit is characterized by a skin colour change during ripening.
However, markets importing South African 'Hass' avocado fruit have been complaining about poor skin colour development during ripening.
Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the effect of harvest time and 1-MCP on the 'Hass' avocado fruit skin colour change during ripening. 'Hass' avocado fruits were harvested at early, mid- and late season, thereafter, they were treated with 1-MCP at 300 ppm.
After treatment, the fruit was stored at 5.5ᵒC for 28 d, followed by ripening at 21ᵒC. During ripening, the fruit was evaluated for skin colour, firmness, ripeness and external chilling damage.
The application of 1-MCP seemed to improve the colour development for early and middle harvest when compared with late harvest. 1-MCP also showed lower chilling damage than untreated fruit throughout the harvest seasons.
In conclusion, 1-MCP has the potential to alleviate the colour change problem through an extension of the ripening time for the early and middle harvest season.
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