THE EFFECT OF CANOPY POSITION, COLD STORAGE DURATION AND HARVEST MATURITY ON THE EATING QUALITY AND MEALINESS INCIDENCE OF 'FORELLE' PEARS
Temperature and irradiance differences within a pear tree canopy may affect the eating quality of fruit. Mealiness, a soft, dry textural disorder, is often associated with Forelle pears. The objective of our first trial carried out over two seasons (2011/2012) was to determine whether commercially harvested outer and inner canopy Forelle pears that were stored at -0.5°C for 9, 12 or 16 weeks and ripened for 7 days at 20°C differ in quality attributes. We were interested in how these differences, if any, relate to consumer preference for the eating quality of the pears. The incidence of mealiness was significantly greater in outer canopy fruit; consequently inner canopy pears were preferred in terms of eating quality. The percentage of mealy fruit decreased with prolonged cold storage periods, providing support for the mandatory 12 weeks cold storage period of South African Forelle pears. During our second trial in 2012, it came to light that harvest maturity greatly affects the eating quality of Forelle pears. The general consumer dislike for late-harvested, outer canopy pears seemed to relate to high mealiness incidence. The considerable difference in mealiness susceptibility between outer and inner canopy fruit opens a new avenue for research on mealiness.
Cronje, A., Crouch, E.M., Theron, K.I., Muller, M. and Steyn, W.J. (2015). THE EFFECT OF CANOPY POSITION, COLD STORAGE DURATION AND HARVEST MATURITY ON THE EATING QUALITY AND MEALINESS INCIDENCE OF 'FORELLE' PEARS. Acta Hortic. 1094, 501-508
Pyrus communis L., consumer preference, eating quality, texture, appearance