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Ascorbic Acid Concentration in Cv. Conference Pears during Fruit Development and Postharvest Storage
- Franck, Christine, Baetens, Mieke, Lammertyn, Jeroen, Verboven, Pieter, Davey, Mark W., Nicolaï, Bart M.
- Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 2003 v.51 no.16 pp. 4757-4763
- air, ascorbic acid, carbon dioxide, controlled atmosphere storage, cooling, dehydroascorbic acid, fruiting, fruits, harvest date, oxygen, pears, ripening, trees
- L-Ascorbic acid (L-AA) concentration changes during the development of cv. Conference pears and the influence of postharvest handlings (gas condition, cooling rate, cooling duration) on L-AA breakdown were studied. L-AA concentration fluctuates in young fruits, remains stable during fruit maturation, and starts to decline 1 week before commercial harvest. The most rapid decrease in L-AA concentration was found during immediate controlled atmosphere. During short-term storage, only the gas condition was found to influence L-AA breakdown; no significant difference between gradually or immediately cooled pears was determined. Under air conditions, both cooling strategies did not differ from the L-AA breakdown in pears allowed to ripen on the tree up until 3 weeks after the optimal harvest date. During long-term storage, the cooling duration (1−3 weeks) had no effect whereas both O2 and CO2 had a significant effect on L-AA retention. After 7 months of storage, no difference was found in dehydroascorbic acid concentration; the L-AA and total L-AA concentrations, in contrast, were significantly lower in the 5% CO2 conditions.