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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Fort Pierce, Florida » U.S. Horticultural Research Laboratory » Citrus and Other Subtropical Products Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #262055

Title: Ethanol vapor and saprophytic yeast treatments reduce decay and maintain quality of intact and fresh-cut cherries

item Bai, Jinhe
item Plotto, Anne
item SPOTTS, ROBERT - Oregon State University
item RATTANAPANONE, NITHIYA - Chiang Mai University

Submitted to: Postharvest Biology and Technology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/28/2011
Publication Date: 9/1/2011
Citation: Bai, J., Plotto, A., Spotts, R., Rattanapanone, N. 2011. Ethanol vapor and saprophytic yeast treatments reduce decay and maintain quality of intact and fresh-cut cherries. Postharvest Biology and Technology. 62:204-212.

Interpretive Summary: Ethanol treatment slowed softening, darkening, and acid decrease in cherry fruit, as well as discoloration of the stems, and improved visual and sensory quality of fruit without causing any off-flavor. Ethanol also retarded darkening and reduced incidence of brown rot of fresh-cut-cherries. A saprophytic yeast, Cryptococcus infirmo-miniatum, which has been reported to control brown rot and blue mold of fresh sweet cherries controlled brown rot in fresh-cut cherries at 1 °C in inoculated fruit and at 20 °C in noninoculated fruit. A combination of sanitation, low temperature, ethanol, and C. infirmo-miniatus may provide excellent decay control in fresh-cut cherries and merits additional study.

Technical Abstract: The objective of this study was to evaluate the use of an ethanol vapor release pad and a saprophytic yeast (Cryptococcus infirmo-miniatum) to reduce decay and maintain postharvest quality of intact or fresh-cut sweet cherries (Prunus avium L.) cv. Lapins and Bing. Intact or fresh-cut fruit were packed in perforated clamshells and stored at 1, 10 or 20 °C for up to 21, 14 and 8 days, respectively. For ethanol treatment, a pad with timed-release ethanol was glued inside the clamshells. Ethanol treatment caused accumulation of ethanol in the packaging headspace and in the fruit, but little ethanol was detected in the untreated control fruit. Nonetheless, a sensory taste panel did not perceive any flavor difference from the ethanol treatment. The ethanol treatment retarded softening, darkening, and acid decrease in fruit as well as discoloration of the stems, and extended shelf-life of intact cherries. Ethanol reduced brown rot (Monilinia fructicola) in fresh-cut cherries stored at 20 °C, but not at 1 and 10 °C. A pre-packaging dip in C. infirmo-miniatus completely controlled brown rot in inoculated fresh-cut cherries stored at 1 °C, and in naturally infected cherries at 20 °C.