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1-Methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) is the active component of the SmartFresh Quality System. By the application of the 1-MCP compound, quality of the harvested pears can be preserved longer during the normal cold storage. In our work, the effectiveness of the SmartFresh Quality System was investigated on ‘Bosc Kobak’ pears (Pyruscommunis L.) harvested at different times. The rheological changes and storage losses were measured. The effectiveness of 1-MCP depends on many variables, but our results show that the optimal harvest date and the condition of the harvested fruit are the most influential factors.

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Postharvest quality changes of two pear and five sweet pepper varieties during cold storage (2±1 °C and 10±1 °C, respectively) and shelf-life (22±2 °C and 20±1 °C, respectively) by non-destructive optical methods (laser backscattering imaging, chlorophyll fluorescence analysis, surface colour measurement) and texture analysis methods (acoustic impulse-response technique, impact method) were determined and monitored. The rate of the change of ‘Conference’ pears’ Fv/Fm chlorophyll fluorescence parameter was lower than for ‘Bosc kobak’, referring to the cultivar characteristic and photosynthetically active chlorophyll content related maturity and colour change. Acoustic and impact stiffness decreased during shelf-life, referring clearly to temperature related textural change. Taking into account the seven different measuring wavelengths (650–1064 nm), laser scattering parameters showed significant and cultivar dependent changes versus time during cold storage and shelf-life. The used non-destructive methods were found to be suitable for objective sweet pepper quality determination. Cold storage combined shelf-life resulted in a relatively longer shelf-life, with a lower intensity and rate of quality decrease in time, based upon mass loss, stiffness, surface colour, and chlorophyll fluorescence changes. ‘Gigant’, ‘Carma’, and ‘Kárpia’ cultivars were found to be favourable, but ‘Kais’ and ‘Kun’ hot pepper samples were really sensitive to quality degradation.

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Progress in Agricultural Engineering Sciences
T. Zsom
V. Zsom-Muha
D. L. Dénes
L. Baranyai
, and
J. Felföldi

The aims of our research work were the investigation of postharvest changes of pear samples (Pyrus communis cv. Bosc kobak) during combined cold storage and shelf-life (storage at room temperature), the determination of quality changes by mainly non-destructive methods, the modeling of the changes of the non-destructive parameters (acoustic, impact stiffness coefficient, chlorophyll fluorescence parameters [F v /F m , F m /F 0 ]), and multivariate statistical analysis of the measured and predicted data based on the data of the non-destructive texture analysis (acoustic and impact methods), chlorophyll fluorescence analysis and laser scattering measurement. Storage Time Equivalent Value (STEV) was calculated and introduced based on mass-loss analysis. The changes of the non-destructive parameters were analyzed vs. this virtual storage time (STEV). The changes of acoustic, impact stiffness coefficient and chlorophyll fluorescence parameters can be predicted by exponential function. The predicted time constants of the parameters were 21.0, 45.8, 47.1, 83.4, acoustic, impact stiffness coefficient, F m /F 0, F v /F m , respectively. The lower the time constant, the quicker is the change of the given parameter during storage, the higher is its sensitivity. By this point of view, the percentage mass loss related sensitivity to the characterization of textural changes, the predicted acoustic stiffness coefficient was found to be more sensitive than the impact stiffness coefficient. The F m /F 0 value characterized more sensibly the changes of the chlorophyll fluorescence than in the literature commonly used F v /F m . The non-contact laser scattering method based significant PLS models were constructed to predict the quality related pear characteristics (mechanical properties, chlorophyll fluorescence parameters).

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The efficacy of 1-MCP on apricots at different treatment temperatures and days after harvest during 6 weeks of storage at 1 °C was investigated. On the 1st, 3rd, or 5th day after harvest, fruit were treated with 1-MCP at 1 °C for 24 hours. In order to evaluate the effect of temperature, apricots were exposed to 1-MCP at 1, 10, and 20 °C (on the 1st day after harvest). 1-MCP application reduced the ethylene and CO2 production and delayed softening. Fruit treated on the 1st day after harvest presented the highest firmness at the end of the experiment. No significant effect of treatment temperatures on apricot quality was observed. The time period between harvest and 1-MCP application could be delayed until the 5th day after harvest. Results showed that 1-MCP extended the storage life and maintained the overall quality of apricot during storage and shelf-life.

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Sweet pepper is susceptible to relatively fast quality changes and its quality is influenced strongly by water or mass losses mainly due to transpiration processes during post-harvest. The aim of this study was the investigation of different storage conditions' effect on quality maintenance of pepper using surface thermal imaging, measurement of overall static stiffness and low-mass impact stiffness as non-destructive methods. Post-harvest keeping quality of pepper samples increased and unfavourable quality degradation was prevented under low, non-chilling temperatures together with the use of LDPE-packaging film resulted in high quality and fresh appearance after more than two weeks long storage period.

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This work aimed to evaluate the effect of ethylene treatment on ripening of 1-MCP treated pear after 6 months of cold storage. Pear treated with gaseous 1-MCP at 625–650 ppb for 24 h at 0 °C was stored at 0 °C for 6 months with normal air, and treated groups were exposed to 100 ppm ethylene at 20 °C for 24 h. After that, samples were kept at 0, 10, and 15 °C for 2 weeks. Stiffness, chlorophyll fluorescence, ethylene and CO2 production of fruit were investigated during 2 weeks. Application of ethylene resumed the ripening of pear after long term storage. The results showed that fruit treated with ethylene achieved more homogeneous surface colour in comparison with non ethylene treated pears. In addition, the ethylene and carbon dioxide production of ethylene treated pears had higher values than that of control. The ethylene treatment could accelerate the softening of pear. Temperature also has significant effect on ripening during storage. This study found that ethylene treatment could accelerate the normal ripening of 1-MCP treated pears.

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Reliable product characteristics are needed for the prediction of shelf life by mathematical models in the post-harvest sector. Exact knowledge of the nature of changes during ripening and storage in refrigerated storage is essential. Authors investigated physical, chemical and biological changes of field-grown, autumn-harvested food grade potato (cultivar Kondor) as a function of temperature and storage time and the market quality was determined by visual assessment. Most of the investigations were preceded by sampling and methodological examinations. The most appropriate characteristics for the predictive modelling were: water soluble solids content, total starch content, weight loss during storage, marketability of the product (visually assessed) and texture parameters: acoustic firmness factor and bio-yield (by Instron Universal Testing Machine). Components of complex impedance, except for some cases, would be unreliable factors in model creation.

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