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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Ethylene Treatment of Carambolas Prior to Quarantine Cold Treatment

Authors
item Miller, William
item McDonald, Roy
item Trunk, Maria - BROOKS TROPICALS, INC.

Submitted to: Proceedings Florida State Horticultural Science
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: December 9, 1996
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Carambolas must be cold temperature treated for the control of the Caribbean fruit fly before shipment to some domestic or export markets that restrict entry of this particular insect. Cold treatment may cause injury to fruit peel. We determined that fruit harvested with mature green peel color had more severe and greater incidence of peel disorders following cold treatment compared with fruit harvested with slight yellow peel color. Subjecting fruit to ethylene treatment prior to cold treatment caused fruit to soften and decreased the sensory acceptability of fruit flavor and texture. In addition, ethylene did not satisfactorily improve the yellow color development of green peel fruit. Growers and handlers will improve the maintenance of carambola condition and quality following 10 days of storage by harvesting fruit with at least 3% to 25% yellow peel color, with or without exposure to cold treatment.

Technical Abstract: Carambolas must be subjected to a quarantine cold treatment (CT) for the control of Caribbean fruit fly (Anastrepha suspensa Loew) prior to shipment to certain domestic or export markets. Carambola trees produce several crops of fruit each season and fruit of more than one crop may be present at harvest. Shippers may harvest mature fruit with peel color ranging from green to various shades of yellow. We found mature green peel (MGP) fruit to have increased severity of the peel disorders scald, pitting, stem-end breakdown, and necrotic tissue at the margins of the fins compared with slight yellow peel (SYP) fruit. Ethylene treatment prior to CT increased the severity and incidence of these same condition attributes, caused fruit to be softer, and decreased the acceptability of flavor and texture. Carambola shippers can reduce the development of peel disorders and maintain better flavor and texture in the marketplace by harvesting fruit with 3% to 25% yellow color with or without CT compared with similarly treated MGP fruit.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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