EFFECTS OF DEGREE OF CUTTING AND STORAGE ON ATMOSPHERE COMPOSITION, METABOLIC ACTIVITY AND QUALITY OF ROCKET LEAVES UNDER MODIFIED ATMOSPHERE PACKAGING
This work investigates the effect of degree of cutting on atmosphere composition as well as on metabolic activity (CO2 and ethylene production), color and some nutritional parameters of rocket leaves subjected to storage at 8C for 7 and 14 days under modified atmosphere packaging (MAP). Harvested leaves were trimmed at the point that lamina starts and then they were used without further processing (intact), or after cutting into two (half) or four (quarter) similar parts, vertically to the midrib. The results showed that degree of cutting did not affect the metabolic activity of rocket leaves (CO2 and ethylene production), but storage duration did. This resulted in non-significant differences in atmosphere composition (CO2 and ethylene concentration) of the packages containing leaves of different degree of cutting as well as on color and some nutritional parameters of rocket leaves. These results suggest that storage duration is more critical than the degree of cutting and it should be considered for application to MAP design for the rocket leaves. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS
Rocket is usually marketed as fresh-cut in modified atmosphere packages (MAPs) either alone or in a mixture with other leafy vegetables. Important response of tissues to wounding, induced during the preparation of fresh-cut produce, is the increase of CO2 and ethylene production, affecting its perishability. The intensity of the wounding response is proportional to the extent of wounding. However, the effect of degree of cutting of rocket leaves on the metabolic activity as well as on the quality is still unresolved. The increase of ethylene production as a wounding response, if any, could have a detrimental effect on the color of minimally processed rocket leaves stored under MAP. This work investigates the effect of degree of cutting and storage duration on atmosphere composition as well as on metabolic activity, color and some nutritional parameters of rocket leaves stored under MAP, which can be useful for application to MAP design for this product.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: September 1, 2010