Comparison of firmness meters for measuring 'Hass' avocado fruit firmness

M. Mazhar, D. Joyce, A. Lisle, R. Collins, P. Hofman
The temporal passage of fruit through the supply chain and the selection of consumable fruit by shoppers depend primarily upon fruit firmness. Traditionally, fruit firmness measuring methods, like Effegi and conical probes, are relatively inefficient and destructive. Simple, accurate and non-damaging methods of measuring fruit firmness are ideally required to help assure eating quality to the consumer without fruit wastage. The firmness of 'Hass' avocado fruit at a range of ripening stages was measured with the various different firmness measuring techniques of the Sinclair iQ Firmness Tester (SIQFT), the Electronic Firmometer (EF), the Analogue Firmness Meter (AFM) and hand squeezing. Measurements were made by each method at different points on the same fruit. Destructive bruise assessment was performed 48 h later, thereby allowing sufficient time for fruit to express any bruising resulting from the act of firmness measurements. Non-linear relationships were determined between fruit firmness values measured with the different techniques. The adjusted R2 for the relationship between the SIQFT and the EF was 91.6%. For the SIQFT and the AFM, the adjusted R2 was 73.7%. It was 77.7% for the SIQFT and hand squeezing. A significantly (P<0.05) high incidence of bruising was associated with firmness assessment by the EF as compared with either the SIQFT or the AFM. Among the methods compared, the SIQFT was non-damaging compared with the EF and relatively efficient for measuring the firmness. This instrument merits consideration as a quality control tool of choice in 'Hass' avocado supply chains.
Mazhar, M., Joyce, D., Lisle, A., Collins, R. and Hofman, P. (2016). Comparison of firmness meters for measuring 'Hass' avocado fruit firmness. Acta Hortic. 1119, 163-170
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2016.1119.22
analogue firmness meter, Anderson electronic firmometer, bruising, non-destructive, Sinclair iQ firmness tester

Acta Horticulturae