Submitted to: HortScience
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: July 10, 2000
Publication Date: N/A
Experiments compared changes in quality of slices of red tomato fruit from plants grown using black polyethylene or hairy vetch mulches under various foliar disease management systems including: no fungicide applications (NF), a disease forecasting model (Tom-Cast) and weekly fungicide applications (WF), during storage at 5C under a modified atmosphere. We analyzed for firmness, soluble solids content (SSC), titratable acidity (TA), pH, electrolyte leakage, molds, yeasts and occurrence of chilling injury (water-soaked areas). During storage, slices from tomato fruit grown in black polyethylene mulch under Tom- Cast or WF fungicide treatments showed greater firmness than those grown under NF. Ethylene production of slices from tomato fruit grown using hairy vetch mulch under Tom-Cast was about 1.5- and 5-fold higher than that of slices from tomato fruit grown under the WF and NF fungicide treatments after 12 d, respectively. Within each fungicide treatment, hairy vetch mulch showed less chilling injury (water-soaked areas) than black polyethylene mulch. When stored at 20C, slices from light-red tomato fruit grown with black polyethylene or hairy vetch both showed a rapid increase in electrolyte leakage beginning 6 h after slicing. However, slices from tomato fruit grown using hairy vetch tended to have lower electrolyte leakage than black polyethylene mulch. Results suggest that fruit from plants grown using hairy vetch mulch may be more suitable for fresh-cut slices than those grown using black polyethylene. Also, the use of Tom-Cast, which can result in lower fungicide application than is used commercially, resulted in a high quality fruit for fresh-cut processing.