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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Corvallis, Oregon » National Clonal Germplasm Repository » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #403361

Research Project: Management of Temperate-Adapted Fruit, Nut, and Specialty Crop Genetic Resources and Associated Information

Location: National Clonal Germplasm Repository

Title: Assessing genetic parameters and predictability for shelf life parameters in blueberry

item MENGIST, MOLLA - North Carolina State University
item POTTORF, MARTI - North Carolina State University
item GIONGO, LARA - Fondazione Edmund Mach
item Mackey, Theodore - Ted
item FERRAO, FELIPE - University Of Florida
item LILA, MARY ANN - North Carolina State University
item LUBY, CLAIRE - Michigan State University
item Bassil, Nahla
item MUNOZ, PATRICIO - University Of Florida
item PERKINS-VEAZIE, PENELOPE - North Carolina State University
item IORIZZO, MASSIMO - North Carolina State University

Submitted to: HortScience
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/3/2023
Publication Date: 8/2/2023
Citation: Mengist, M., Pottorf, M., Giongo, L., Mackey, T.A., Ferrao, F., Lila, M., Luby, C., Bassil, N.V., Munoz, P., Perkins-Veazie, P., Iorizzo, M. 2023. Assessing genetic parameters and predictability for shelf life parameters in blueberry. HortScience. Abstract for American Society for Horticultural Science Annual Conference, 7/31/23-8/4/23; Orland, FL.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The shelf life of blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum L.) fruit depends on changes for multiple fruit characteristics during storage including texture, appearance of wrinkles and mold, and loss of water. These changes make the fruit soft and decayed in appearance and affect its flavor/taste, all of which negatively affect consumer acceptance. Therefore, extending blueberry shelf life is an important goal for blueberry breeders, and requires understanding characteristics that contribute to the changes occurring during storage and whether they are heritable. In this study, 20 texture parameters, fruit size-related traits (fruit weight, fruit scar diameter and fruit height), and fruit appearance (wrinkles, mold) were measured at harvest (T0) and six weeks post-storage (T6) in a large collection of northern highbush blueberries grown in Oregon. Fruit chemistry parameters (SSC, pH, Sugars, TA) were also measured at T0. The data was used to: 1) estimate genetic parameters for post-harvest texture, size-related traits and appearance; 2) establish correlation between texture parameters and size-related traits at two time points (T0, T6) and; 3) assess predictability of post-harvest changes using data collected at T0. Preliminary analysis revealed texture parameters including firmness and young modulus related traits as those contributing the most to the changes during storage, and weight loss had limited contribution to texture changes. Changes for size-related parameters (fruit weight, fruit height, weight loss) were highly predictable and heritable while changes for most texture parameters had low to moderate heritability and predictability. Fruit chemistry parameters did not significantly contribute to predicting texture, weight or appearance in post-harvest. Future work will assess the same parameters in southern highbush genotypes grown in Florida. Identifying the parameters that affect blueberry shelf life across environments can provide a strategy to select for blueberry fruit with extended shelf life.