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Preharvest Applications of Sprayable 1-methylcyclopropene in the Orchard for Management of Apple Harvest and Postharvest Condition

Elfving, D.C., Drake, S.R., Reed, A.N., Visser, D.B.
HortScience 2007 v.42 no.5 pp. 1192
Malus domestica, apples, plant growth substances, plant cultural practices, fruit quality, postharvest physiology, crop quality, orchards, application timing, cultivars, aminoethoxyvinylglycine, storage time, controlled atmosphere storage, firmness, ethylene, ethylene production, shelf life, temperature, soluble solids, titratable acidity, color, Washington
A sprayable formulation of 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP; AgroFresh, Spring House, PA) was applied to 'Scarletspur Delicious' and 'Cameo' apples in the orchard 1 to 3 weeks before harvest and compared in different postharvest studies with the commercial postharvest 1-MCP fruit treatment (SmartFresh; AgroFresh) and with aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG; ReTain; Valent BioSciences, Walnut Creek, CA). Treated apples were held in air storage for 50 to 60 d or in controlled-atmosphere storage for 120 to 125 or 215 to 225 d. With increased concentration, sprayable 1-MCP treatments were effective at controlling flesh firmness loss and internal ethylene concentration (IEC) up to 225 d of storage as well as during a 7-d poststorage shelf life simulation at room temperature. Application closer to harvest improved the effect of sprayable 1-MCP on control of flesh firmness loss and IEC. Concentrations of sprayable 1-MCP above 90 mg a.i./L produced similar fruit effects to 1-MCP. Treatment with 1-MCP showed little effect on soluble solids concentration (SSC), titratable acidity (TA), or skin or flesh color in 'Delicious' but slightly increased SSC and TA in 'Cameo' apples. AVG applied 4 weeks before commercial harvest controlled IEC nearly as well as either sprayable 1-MCP or 1-MCP during storage, but AVG-treated fruit allowed to ripen for 7 d at room temperature after storage lost much more flesh firmness regardless of storage regime. Sprayable 1-MCP also reduced starch hydrolysis, IEC and fruit drop at harvest. Sprayable 1-MCP may offer new opportunities for effective preharvest management of apple fruit condition, storability, and poststorage fruit quality.