Submitted to: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/14/2002
Publication Date: 9/14/2002
Citation: FAN, X., BAXENDALE, K.J. CHANGES IN VOLATILE COMPOUNDS OF GAMMA IRRADIATED FRESH CILANTRO LEAVES DURING COLD STORAGE. JOURNAL OF AGRICULTURAL AND FOOD CHEMISTRY. 2002. V. 50. P. 7622-7627. Interpretive Summary: The fresh leaves of the cilantro are highly regarded in the cuisines of China, Mexico, South America, India and Southeast Asia. However, there are several recent outbreaks associated with consumption of the herb contaminated with foodborne pathogens. Irradiation is highly effective in inactivating foodborne pathogens on vegetables. It is unclear whether irradiation influences aroma, one of major quality attributes of fresh cilantro. This study was conducted to investigate volatile compounds of fresh cilantro as affected by irradiation and by post-irradiation storage. Irradiation at doses up to 3 kGy had no consistent effects on the amount of volatile compounds. The duration of cold storage is more important factor determining volatile production. Irradiation can be used for pathogen inactivation without loss of volatile compounds. This information is useful for the vegetable industry to improve food safety.
Technical Abstract: Consumption of salsas and dishes containing cilantro has been linked to several recent outbreaks of foodborne illness due to contamination with human pathogens. Ionizing irradiation can effectively eliminate foodborne pathogens from various vegetables. However, the effect of irradiation on aroma of fresh cilantro is unknown. This study was conducted to investigate the effect of irradiation on volatile compounds of fresh cilantro leaves. Fresh cilantro leaves were irradiated with 0, 1, 2, or 3 kGy gamma radiation and then stored at 3 C for 14 days. Volatile compounds were extracted using solid phase microextraction (SPME), followed by gas chromatographic separation and mass spectra detection at 0, 3, 7 and 14 days after irradiation. Most of the volatile compounds identified were aldehydes. Decanal and (E)-decenal were the most abundant compounds, accounting for more than 80 percent of the total amount of identified compounds. Irradiation did not have a consistent effect on the amount of volatile compounds. During storage at 3 C, the amount of most aldehydes peaked at 3 days and then decreased afterward. Our results show that irradiation can be used for safety enhancement at doses up to 3 kGy without any significant effect on volatile compounds.