Losses of vitamin C from fresh strawberries in a commercial supply chain
Fresh strawberries were evaluated through a commercial supply chain, from harvest to immediately prior to retail display. These samples were compared with controls that were refrigerated immediately after harvest and kept at a constant temperature for the same period of time. Temperature data were collected throughout all stages of the supply chain. Moisture and vitamin C (ascorbic acid) contents were determined at selected points of the supply chain using recognised methodology. Significant differences were found in the vitamin C concentrations of fresh strawberries at various stages of the supply chain but not in their moisture content. The ascorbic acid concentration decreased with time spent in the supply chain in all trials but the absolute vitamin C content differed from trial to trial. This result indicates that both pre- and post-harvest factors influence the vitamin C content of fresh strawberries available to consumers on the retail market.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: 1: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Université de Moncton, Moncton, NB E1A3E9, Canada 2: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Atlantic Food and Horticulture Research Centre, Kentville, NS B4N1J5, Canada
Publication date: April 1, 2009