Benefits of Ethylene Removal in the Conservation of Peaches and Nectarines.

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Courtesy of Bioconservacion SA

A recently-published scientific article has shown the benefits of ethylene removal with Bioconservacion technology for the quality and shelf life of peaches and nectarines.

The main causes of post-harvest losses of peaches and nectarines include metabolic changes, reduced firmness of the flesh, mechanical damage and physiological disorders (internal browning). Peaches and nectarines are climacteric fruit. Their rapid ripening after harvest is the reason for their short shelf life and it represents a serious limitation on the handling and transporting of this fruit.

Ethylene is the direct or indirect cause of most of the physiological disorders in climacteric fruit. Ethylene significantly affects the change of colour, the increase of sugars and the reduction in the acidity and firmness of peaches and nectarines. To date, few scientific studies have researched the effect of ethylene in the rotting processes of peach and nectarine.

The authors of this study produced a granulate of zeolite (clinoptilolite) impregnated with potassium permanganate at laboratory scale, and studied the effect of applying this ethylene absorber on the shelf life and quality parameters of warehoused peaches and nectarines.

Two varieties of peach (Red Top and Anjiry) and three varieties of nectarine (Red Gold, Songlu and Independence) were used in the experiment. The fruit was preserved at 0ºC for 36 days, simulating the conditions of export from Iran. Several quality parameters that affect the marketing and shelf life of the fruit (pH, firmness, appearance, concentration of soluble solids, titratable acidity, internal breakdown and weight reduction) were measured at the start of the experiment and at 12, 24 and 36 days. The granulated ethylene absorber was applied in an air recirculating machine (Bioconservacion ETH-1500), placed below the chamber evaporator.

The results indicate that the application of a zeolite (clinoptilolite) granulate impregnated with potassium permanganate in a machine that recirculates air contaminated with ethylene avoids weight loss, reduced firmness, and deterioration, and increases the shelf life and quality of stored peaches and nectarines.

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