Submitted to: HortScience
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: February 4, 2002
Publication Date: August 15, 2002
Citation: Davis, A.R., Fish, W.W., Perkins Veazie, P.M. 2002. Xenon flash spectrophotometric method for lycopene quantitation in watermelon [abstract]. HortScience. 37(5):753.
Lycopene is a carotenoid with antioxidant properties. This carotenoid imparts the red pigment in watermelon, tomato, and pink grapefruit but in few other fruits and vegetables that are typically consumed in a North American diet. Because of its health benefits and food colorant potential, lycopene content in fruits is of interest to the food industry. Current methods to assay lycopene content in fruit are time consuming, expensive and use hazardous organic solvents. Attempts to correlate lycopene content to tristimulus colorimeter readings of cut watermelon fruit have been unable to accurately predict lycopene content. We report a method by which color absorbance was used to quantify lycopene content in watermelon flesh puree. This method is rapid, inexpensive and needs no hazardous chemicals. This simple method using a xenon flash colorimeter/spectrophotometer for measuring lycopene content in watermelon and watermelon products promises widespread use for lycopene quantitation