Prolonging Shelf Life of Some Semiarid Fruits
Arid zone fruits being highly perishable have to be marketed immediately after harvest. The postharvest losses range from 25 to 30 %. Chudawat et al. reported that most of the fruits could be stored for only up to 3–4 days at room temperature. Enzyme evolution of fruits on the tree is not triggered due to the presence of natural inhibitors. Various chemicals are known to play a significant role in suppression of enzyme activity (Desai and Deshpande; J Maharashtra Agric Univ, 9:24–26, 1978). Considering its short shelf life, work in arid zone was initiated to study the effect of ripening retardants on enzyme activity in arid zone fruits.
The fruits showed increased loss of weight and a fall in percentage of marketable fruits. The total soluble solids, acidity, ascorbic acid, and starch content declined, while activities of amylase, peroxidase, catalase, and pectin methyl esterase increased along with the evolution of ethylene. The content of sugar increased first and then registered a fall. Treatment with CaCl2, GA3, and bavistin delayed the ripening processes and the effect was pronounced in fruits with bavistin 1,000 ppm or gibberellic acid 200 ppm was most effective in altering most of the physical, physiological, and biochemical changes, giving maximum shelf life in terms of marketable fruits.
KeywordsShelf Life Calcium Chloride Gibberellic Acid Storage Period Starch Content
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