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Effect of thyme oil–alginate‐based coating on quality and microbial safety of fresh‐cut apples

Sarengaowa,, Hu, Wenzhong, Jiang, Aili, Xiu, Zhilong, Feng, Ke
Journal of the science of food and agriculture 2018 v.98 no.6 pp. 2302-2311
Escherichia coli O157, Listeria monocytogenes, Salmonella Typhimurium, Staphylococcus aureus, antimicrobial properties, apples, cinnamon oil, coatings, edible films, firmness, food preservation, fresh-cut produce, microbial growth, microorganisms, natural additives, oils, oregano, thyme, weight loss
BACKGROUND: Food preservation is critical for keeping fresh‐cut products fresh, nutritious, safe, attractive and available for consumers. To improve the safety and quality of fresh‐cut fruits, 15 essential oils (EOs) were screened to test the antimicrobial activity against Listeria monocytogenes (LM), Salmonella typhimurium (ST), Staphylococcus aureus (SA) and Escherichia coli O157:H7 (EC O157:H7). The effect of alginate‐based edible coating (EC) incorporating different concentrations thyme oil on fresh‐cut ‘Red Fuji’ apples was investigated. RESULTS: Results showed that thyme oil, cinnamon oil and oregano oil were more effective in inhibiting the microbes than other EOs. The result showed that the combined usage of 0.5 µL mL⁻¹ thyme oil incorporated with alginate‐based EC could significantly inhibit the microbial growth, respiration, weight loss, firmness and browning of fresh‐cut ‘Red Fuji’ apples. CONCLUSION: The edible coating and natural additives like thyme oil could be used to preserve the quality of fresh‐cut fruits. It revealed that EC incorporated with 0.5 µL mL⁻¹ thyme oil can be a safe preservative for fresh‐cut apples. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry