Effect of physiological maturity at harvest and cool storage on chilling injury severity in peach and nectarine
Chilling injury (CI) is a physiological disorder of peaches and nectarines with symptoms including flesh browning, bleeding and mealiness. The effect of fruit maturity, storage duration and temperature on CI severity has not been fully elucidated, and was investigated in this work. Index of absorbance difference (IAD) in fruit was successfully correlated with ethylene production. 'Summer Bright' and 'September Red' nectarine, and 'September Sun' peach were categorized into climacteric, onset-climacteric or pre-climacteric maturity classes based on IAD values. Fruit were cool-stored for up to six weeks at 0 and 7°C and CI severity assessed after ripening. Flesh browning severity in climacteric nectarines increased with longer storage duration at 7°C. Increasing CI severity in peach was associated with pre-climacteric fruit and longer storage, but not with higher storage temperature. Our results indicated that CI severity, as expressed by flesh browning and mealiness, generally increased with a longer storage duration and higher temperature. Classifying fruit into maturity classes based on IAD value confirmed that greater maturity at harvest significantly increased CI in nectarines after storage, whereas riper peaches had a lower susceptibility to CI than immature fruit.
Lopresti, J., Hale, G., Stefanelli, D., Frisina, C. and Jaeger, J. (2016). Effect of physiological maturity at harvest and cool storage on chilling injury severity in peach and nectarine. Acta Hortic. 1120, 157-164
stone fruit, Prunus persica (L.) Batsch, fruit maturity, ethylene, index of absorbance difference, cold storage