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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Wapato, Washington » Temperate Tree Fruit and Vegetable Research » Research » Research Project #442340

Research Project: Dev of Better Methods to Det Cultivar Resist to Internal Discoloration from Heat Necrosis, After-Cooking Darkening, Blackheart and Hollow Heart

Location: Temperate Tree Fruit and Vegetable Research

Project Number: 2092-21220-003-022-T
Project Type: Trust Fund Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: May 1, 2022
End Date: Jun 30, 2024

Internal discoloration of tubers results in the loss hundreds of million pounds of potatoes annually in the U.S. and are a major cause of consumer complaints. A major limitation in reducing internals is that the only way to study the disorders is through slow, inconsistent field trials. We will test whether a post-harvest lab assay can be developed in which heat treatments are used to induce internals.

Tubers from multiple cultivars will be incubated at temperatures ranging from 28-42 degrees Celsius for 1-3 days. Following heat treatment tubers will be further incubated at room temperature for 0-28 days. Tubers will be sliced and internals symptoms recorded. Discoloration caused by cooking will be measured by testing various published methods and assessing which methods gives results that most closely align with discoloration seen during commercial processing.