Submitted to: Brazilian Journal of Agricultural Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/1/2003
Publication Date: 10/1/2003
Citation: Argenta, Luis; Krammes, Juliana; Megguer, Calrice; Amarante, Cassandro; and Mattheis, James. Ripening and quality of 'Laetitia' plums following harvest and cold storage as affected by inhibition of ethylene action. Pesq. agropec. bras., Brasilia, v. 38, n. 10l p. 1139-1148. 2003. (Brazilian Journal of Agricultural Research)
Interpretive Summary: Ripening of many different types of tree fruit is promoted by ethylene, an odorless, colorless gas naturally produced by plants. Prolonging the storage and marketing period for these so called climacteric fruit can be accomplished by reducing the effects of ethylene. Refrigeration, controlled atmosphere storage, harvesting at an appropriate fruit maturity all result in extended postharvest life and all work at least in part by reducing the effects of ethylene. Ethylene's impact on fruit ripening requires its presence as well as its perception by fruit tissues. By preventing ethylene perception using another gaseous compound, 1-methylcyclopropene, ripening of climacteric fruit including 'Laetitia' plums is slowed significantly, resulting in greatly extended postharvest life.
Technical Abstract: The inhibition of ethylene action by 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) extends shelf and storage life of many climacteric fruits. However, 1-MCP appears to have limited effects on stone fruit depending on specie and cultivar. The effects of 1-MCP on ripening and quality of 'Lactitia' plums were determined during ripening at 23 deg C following harvest and cold storage. Japanese plums (Prunus salicina, cv. Laetitia) were harvested at mature pre-climacteric stage, cooled to 2 deg C within 36 hours of harvest and then treated with 0, 0.05., 0.10, 0.50 or 1.00 uL L-1 of 1-MCP at 1 deg C for 24 hours. Following treatment, fruits were either held at 23 deg C for 16 days or stored at 1 deg C for 50 days. Fruits were remvoed from cold storage at 10-day intervals and allowed to ripe at 23 deg C for five days. A delay of climacteric respiration and ethylene production by 1-MCP treatment during ripening following harvest and cold storage was associated to a slow rate of fruit softening. 1-MCP treatment also delayed the loss of titratable acidity and changes of flesh and skin color, whereas it had little or no effect on soluble solids content. 1-MCP effects were concentration- and storage duration-dependent and, generaly, a saturaton fruit response to 1-MCP occurred between 0.5 and 1.0 uL L-1. During ripening, 1-MCP treated fruits attained quality similar to that of controls. Results indicated that 1-MCP treatment may extend shelf life (23 deg C) and storage life (1 deg C) of 'Laetitia' plums by approximately six and 20 days, respectively.