SO2 and MAP in strawberry postharvest allow a noticeable decrease in Botrytis development
Suzana Pols et al., ICH 2018
Strawberry fruit is characterized by a unique flavour and taste. The fruit are harvested at full maturity, causing high susceptibility to mechanical damage, pathological and physiological disorders during postharvest storage, with a maximum shelf-life of 4 days.
Due to high levels of postharvest spoilage, increased fungicide resistance and a growing health concern from the consumer, the industry is currently searching for an economically viable, effective and affordable alternative to improve fruit quality and reduce spoilage.
Although various postharvest treatments, including a chitosan coating and hot water treatments have been investigated, an effective standard treatment is yet to be identified.
The aim of this study was to investigate the efficacy of a dual-release sulphur dioxide (SO2) generating pad, in combination with modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) to control postharvest fungal development on strawberry fruit.
The study specifically focused on preventing postharvest development of Botrytis cinereal, commonly referred to as grey mould.
Strawberry fruit exposed to SO2 showed a noticeable decrease in decay development, especially when the SO2 treatment was combined with MAP.
The treatment successfully decreased the B. cinerea incidence by more than half, allowing for a longer cold storage period than is currently available with standard industry practices.