RETARDATION OF APPLE RIPENING DURING DISTRIBUTION BY THE USE OF MODIFIED ATMOSPHERES
In 1kg modified atmosphere (MA) pillow-packs made from suitably permeable plastic films, deteriorative ripening changes, particularly flesh softening and skin yellowing of several UK-grown cvs - Bramley's Seedling, Cox's Orange Pippin, Egremont Russet and Spartan - were retarded and ambient shelf-life extended. Packs of Bramley's and Spartan made from 30μ LDPE, and of Cox's made from 30μ EVA were effective in retarding ripening, without adversely affecting eating quality, of fruit stored under recommended CA conditions, throughout their respective marketing periods. Changes in the maturity and rate of respiration of early Discovery apples during their short 4-week season currently precludes the use of a single MA packaging system for this cv.
The practical application and potential commercial benefits of MA packaging to the UK fruit industry are discussed.