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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Food Quality Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #334474

Research Project: Enhancing Fruit and Vegetable Nutritional Quality with Improved Phenolics Contents

Location: Food Quality Laboratory

Title: Dual effectiveness of ascorbic acid and ethanol combined treatment to inhibit browning and inactivate pathogens on fresh-cut apples

Author
item Yan, Shoulei - Huazhong Agricultural University
item Liu, Hongli - Huazhong Agricultural University
item Yang, Tianbao
item Luo, Yaguang - Sunny
item Chen, Pei

Submitted to: LWT - Food Science and Technology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/11/2017
Publication Date: 2/16/2017
Citation: Yan, S., Liu, H., Yang, T., Luo, Y., Chen, P. 2017. Dual effectiveness of ascorbic acid and ethanol combined treatment to inhibit browning and inactivate pathogens on fresh-cut apples. LWT - Food Science and Technology. 80:311-320.

Interpretive Summary: Lettuce is easily subjected to browning upon wounding or cutting, which reduces the quality and shelf life of packaged fresh-cut lettuce, thus reducing potential product sales. The aim of this work was to evaluate a natural inhibitor of browning for lettuce leaves. Previously it was reported that 10% ethanol treatment reduced lettuce stem browning. In this study, we found that 20% ethanol treatment repressed browning of cut-edges of lettuce leaves, thereby improving visual quality of fresh-cut lettuce up to15 days storage time at 4 oC. The treatment also reduced growth of the natural microbial population found on lettuce and increased culinary quality. These results will be valuable to researchers working to improving produce quality and shelf life and benefit the produce industry and retail market in delivering a higher quality product to consumers.

Technical Abstract: Lettuce is easily subjected to browning upon wound or cutting, which results in the limit of shelf life of fresh-cut lettuce and negative effect on the distribution of lettuce. The aim of this work is to screen an alternative natural inhibitor of browning for lettuce leaves. Previously it was reported that 10% ethanol treatment reduced the lettuce stem browning. In this study, it has been found that 20% ethanol treatment repressed the cut-edges browning progress and kept good visual quality of fresh-cut lettuce leaves with 15 days storage time under 4 oC. The treatment reduced the natural microbial population growth and increased organoleptic properties as compared to the control and the heat shock treatment. These results indicated that the 20% ethanol was a promising alternative to inhibiting enzymatic browning and prolong shelf-life of fresh-cut lettuce.