Keywords: banana quality, bananas, postharvest ripening, fruit ripening, firmness, 1–MCP, storage, aqueous 1–methylcyclopropene, TSS, ascorbic acid content, surface colour, long distance transport, alternatives to refrigeration
Influence of aqueous 1–methylcyclopropene on postharvest ripening and quality of banana
The influence of aqueous 1–methylcyclopropene (1–MCP) on the ripening of harvested banana fruit cv. 'Cavendish' was investigated. Banana fruit at mature green stage were dipped in aqueous 1–MCP at 100, 200, 400 and 600 µg L−1 for 10 min, fan–forced air–dried and then stored at 20 ± 2°C and 85–90% RH for ripening over 30 days. Banana ripening was delayed when dipped in 100–600 µg L−1, however; higher concentrations of 1–MCP were more effective for slowing ripening process and prolonging shelf–life. The changes in firmness, TSS, ascorbic acid contents and surface colour of fruit treated at 400 and 600 µg L−1 of 1–MCP remained strongly suppressed and consequently extended the storage life by 20 days compared to untreated fruit. The untreated fruit was completely ripe after ten days of storage, when fruit firmness, h° value and ascorbic acid content were significantly decreased reaching 5.2 kgf cm−2, 77 and 2.7 mg 100 g−1, respectively. Thus, postharvest immersion of banana fruit in 400 µg L−1 1–MCP solution can be a feasible alternative technology for long distance transport without refrigeration.