Submitted to: Postharvest Biology and Technology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: April 23, 2007
Publication Date: October 30, 2007
Citation: Kim, J., Tao, Y., Luo, Y. 2007. Effect of the combination treatment of 1-methylcyclopropene and acidified sodium chlorite on microbial growth and quality of fresh-cut cilantro. Postharvest Biology and Technology. 144-149. Interpretive Summary: There is an increased consumer demand for packaged fresh-cut culinary herbs, especially cilantro, in both retail and food service sectors. However, the large microbial populations present on cilantro leaves and the rapid quality deterioration remain important obstacles to overcome. We investigated the effects of 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP; a chemical substance that blocks the harmful effect of an age-related plant hormone) and acidified sodium chlorite (ASC; a new sanitizer with a strong killing effect on human pathogenic bacteria and spoilage microorganisms) on quality maintenance and microbial reduction in fresh-cut cilantro. We found that the combined treatment of 1-MCP and ASC was effective in maintaining quality and safety of fresh-cut cilantro. Fresh-cut cilantro that received the combination treatment had the lowest bacterial populations and coliform/Escherichia coli counts, lowest rate of decay, and best overall quality during storage. These findings are important to the fresh-cut industry for solving technical obstacles in developing new products containing fresh-cut cilantro that meet their quality and safety standards.