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Carotenoids production and fruit quality changes during shelf life of peach [Prunus persica (L.) batsch] cultivars harvested at two ripening stages

Bianchi, G., Rizzolo, A., Buccheri, M., Papa, V., Grassi, M., Lo Scalzo, R.
Acta horticulturae 2015 no.1084 pp. 717-724
Prunus persica, abscisic acid, acetone, carotenoids, color, cultivars, ethylene production, firmness, fruit quality, genotype, mutants, nectarines, peaches, principal component analysis, ripening, sensory properties, shelf life, titratable acidity, total soluble solids, volatile compounds
The objective of this comparative study was to determine the quality changes in five peach genotypes [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch] during ripening of fruit harvested at commercial maturity (i.e., fruit picked mature but not fully ripe), and at full physio¬logical maturity. The genotypes used were ‘Big Top’ nectarine, ‘Redhaven’, and its white-fleshed mutant ‘Redhaven Bianca’, ‘IFF331’, and ‘IFF785’ white-fleshed stony hard selections. After 1, 7 and 11 days at 20°C the following fruit quality parameters were analysed: firmness, skin background colour, soluble solids content, and titratable acidity. Ethylene production and abscisic acid concentration were also measured. Carotenoid and volatile compound compositions were also evaluated in order to assess variation in nutritional and sensory quality within and between genotypes. Results showed that in ‘Redhaven’ fruit carotenoid production increased with duration of shelf life (from 400 to 780 µg/100 g fw), and increased in its white mutant (from 25 to 70 µg/ 100 g fw). Principal component analysis of total carotenoids together with the volatile compounds derived from their cleavage underlined that, at commercial maturity, carotenoid concentration was negatively related to geranyl acetone.