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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Food Quality Laboratory » Research » Research Project #440429

Research Project: Evaluation of Carboxamide Derivatives to Suppress Potato Sprouting as an Alternative to Current Dormancy Promoting Chemistries

Location: Food Quality Laboratory

Project Number: 8042-43000-016-004-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: May 27, 2021
End Date: May 26, 2024

The objective is to utilize carboxamide derivative (CADs) compounds to target the problem of potato sprouting, and quality deterioration during postharvest storage. This collaborative study will facilitate industry changes to address new postharvest control alternatives. The collaboration will be fundamental for understanding responses of CADs across different cultivars used today and their potential applicability in storage.

1. Potatoes, cv. Bintje, an early harvest variety, will be used to evaluate CADs as potential sprout inhibitors. The efficacy of CADs in suppressing sprouting will be compared with that of the widely used sprout inhibitor, CIPC and the naturally occurring hormone, ABA. At 0, 15, 30 and 45 days after harvest, cores cut from the tubers will be treated with inhibitors as above. The tuber cores will be sampled continuously in 4 to 5-day intervals and at the conclusion of the experiment (based on the sprouting behavior observed in controls and CIPC treated cores). 2. The three lead CADs, with their identified target rates, will be applied to whole tubers (cv. Ranger Russet and Russet Burbank) grown for their late season phenotype and dormancy potential in a simulated commercial storage at the Washington State University’s (WSU) postharvest physiology lab in Pullman, WA. Treated tubers will be evaluated for application timing and dosage rate to promote dormancy (objective 2). Generally, whole freshly harvested tubers sourced from the WSU research farm will be wound healed and held at 50°F storage to promote more rapid dormancy break. A randomized, factorial design with 3 replications of 6 tubers per rep will be treated at 0, 30, and 60 days postharvest with inhibitors. Application rates will be 50%, 100%, and 200% the proposed rate from Objective 1. Efficiency of sprout inhibitors to suppress sprouting will be visually assessed for each treatment and dormancy type based on sprout timing and the degree of sprouting (i.e., average sprout length). Sprouting will be monitored until all tubers have broken dormancy in the study or until 100 days postharvest. The success of the treatment will be determined by the extent sprouting was suppressed. For post-dormancy evaluations, the tubers will be sampled according to standard protocols at WSU for processing quality attributes (Objective 3). In short, tubers from Objective 2 will have a 3/8” steak fry cut from the center of the tubers for each treatment and fried in canola oil (375°F for 4.5 minutes) and the fry color will be assessed utilizing a photovoltmeter. Associated reflectance color will be correlated to the sugar profile (sucrose, fructose, and glucose) to determine if effects on tuber maturity can be observed. Amino acid profile will also be assessed to identify potential impact on the development of acrylamide with the associated treatments. Data will be recorded and analyzed accordingly so that recommendations will be generated for the potential use of CAD as a potential sprout inhibitor.