EFFECT OF PASSIVE AND ACTIVE MODIFIED ATMOSPHERE PACKAGING ON QUALITY RETENTION OF TWO CULTIVARS OF LITCHI (LITCHI CHINENSIS SONN.)
“Mauritius” and “McLean's Red” were packed in active (5% O2 and 5% CO2) or passive modified atmosphere in polypropylene punnets. Lidding film with 10 and 4 holes was sealed onto the punnets during packing process. Packed fruits were stored at 2C, 95% relative humidity up to 21 days. Observations indicated that “McLean's Red” was more suited for modified atmosphere packaging technology than “Mauritius”. Lidding film-four holes showed ∼7% O2 and 9% CO2, significantly reduced the activity of oxidation enzymes, showed higher retention of pericarp color by retaining the hunter color values L*, C*, h*in the “McLean's Red”. Lidding film-10 holes showed ∼17% O2 and ∼5% CO2, retained the soluble solids concentration to titratable acidity ratio (∼65), and thereby preventing the loss of taste and litchi fruit flavor with acceptable pericarp color. The use of an active modified atmosphere does not change the composition of the gases at equilibrium but lessens the time necessary to reach this equilibrium. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS
Modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) has been considered beneficial to maintain high humidity, prevent water loss and browning of litchi pericarp, and is also considered a convenient method to market value-added small fruits. Results from this study indicated that the selection of MAP is cultivar-dependent. The outcome of this study provides a partial solution for small and medium-scale litchi growers and exporters for marketing chains for up to 20–21 days with information on suitable alternative treatment to replace sulfur dioxide fumigation especially for early season “McLean's Red” litchi.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: September 1, 2010