Submitted to: Proceedings of Florida State Horticultural Society
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: September 9, 1997
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Black sapote, a very minor crop grown in Dade County, Fla., is mainly marketed locally through roadside stands, but some supplies are also distributed through commercial fruit wholesalers. There is no available postharvest information on the maintenance of quality or the extension of shelf life for this emerging crop. Our investigation indicated that black sapote can be stored at temperatures lower than optimum for ripening and then ripened under normal ambient conditions. This delay of fruit ripening extended fruit shelf life by 4 days. Extention of shelf life will benefit growers, wholesalers, and consumers in their marketing endeavors. In addition, we determined that black sapote tolerated irradiation treatment at doses that could be used for quarantine treatment purposes if necessary.
Black sapote (Diospyros digyna Jacq.) were irradiated at 0.15 or 0.3 kGy and held at 25C until ripe. Nonirradiated fruit were placed in storage at 1, 5, 10, 15, 20, or 25C for up to 7, 10, or 15 d and fruit that remained unripe were then held at 25C until ripe. Nonirradiated fruit held at 15, 20, or 25C for 7, 10, or 15 d ripened normally when transferred to 25C. Fruit stored at 10C for 7 d then transferred to 25C ripened normally, but some fruit held at 10C for 10 or 15 d had abnormal ripening. Most fruit stored at 1 or 5C did not ripen normally or failed to ripen regardless of storage duration. Fruit exposed to 0.15 kGy ripened normally, but some fruit treated at 0.3 kGy had random areas of pulp that failed to fully soften and ripen. Ripening of irradiated fruit was delayed about 4 d compared with controls. Based on this preliminary study, ripening may be satisfactorily delayed by storage at 15 or 20C prior to ripening at 25C. Additionally, black sapote will tolerate irradiation at 0.15 kGy, but some abnormal ripening will likely occur with some fruit treated at 0.3 kGy.