Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Natural Pesticides Could Keep Fruit Fresh Longer

Date:
September 27, 1999
Source:
University Of Guelph
Summary:
Fresh fruit may stay fresh longer if a natural pesticide being studied by University of Guelph researchers makes the grade.

Fresh fruit may stay fresh longer if a natural pesticide being studied by University of Guelph researchers makes the grade.

Related Articles


The potential of natural fruit "volatiles" to improve the storage qualities of fresh fruit is being examined by Lisa Skog and Prof. Dennis Murr, from the Department of Plant Agriculture'sVineland Research Station, and Brian McGarvey of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.

Volatiles are natural compounds that contribute to the aroma and flavour of fruit. But in high concentrations, some are antimicrobial agents that can protect against fungal organisms and damage.

"If natural fruit volatiles prove effective, then growers, distributors and consumers will all benefit," says Skog. "It could lead to a healthier product, less storage decay, longer shelf life and decreased losses during shipping."

Fruit boosts its production of certain volatiles in response to injury, microbial attack or environmental stress. There are many fruit volatiles —which include aldehydes, ketones and alcohols — that are commercially available for flavour additives in some foods. But they don't all act as antimicrobial agents.

Skog is evaluating the effectiveness of 20 different volatiles on Ontario peaches and pears in decreasing brown rot and blue mould microbial diseases. A pear processor collaborating on the project estimates that a 75 per cent decrease in the incidence of blue mould alone could save $30,000 per year.

Fruit losses from spoilage are partly due to a recent push to use fewer conventional post- harvest pesticides. This has decreased pesticide residues and risks to consumers, but has also increased post-harvest decay during long distance shipping and storage of fresh fruit, says Skog. Reduced pesticides allow latent infections -- which originate in the field but show no immediate and visible symptoms -- to become active. And fruit processors and growers pay the price in product losses and longer processing times required to remove spoiled fruit.

Skog hopes the low-risk natural volatiles can be an effective substitute for conventional post-harvest pesticides.

"The application of antimicrobial volatiles against post-harvest decay is advantageous because the volatiles quickly dissipate and little residue remains," says Skog. "Also, because the compounds occur naturally in the plant, they may actually enhance flavour."

Results so far indicate that five of the 20 volatiles being investigated are effective antimicrobial agents. Laboratory trials have shown they protect fruit against latent infections, spores and active (already growing) infections. Skog predicts volatiles will be very effective in preventing latent infections from becoming active because they can penetrate the fruit surface.

Future projects include determining the mode of action of natural volatiles, finding the best methods of application, and the precise concentration of volatiles required to protect the fruit.

This research is sponsored by the Vineland Growers Cooperative, Nabisco Ltd., and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada through the Ontario Research Enhancement Program, a $4- million federally funded research initiative administered by the Research Branch of AAFC with input from the agriculture and agri-food sector, universities and the province. OREP supports 25 research projects in universities and research centres across the province, with the University of Guelph as a major participant. Projects focus on two key areas identified by the agriculture and agri-food community: consumer demand for higher quality safe products and ensuring crop production management systems that are environmentally sustainable.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Guelph. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Guelph. "Natural Pesticides Could Keep Fruit Fresh Longer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 September 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/09/990924113856.htm>.
University Of Guelph. (1999, September 27). Natural Pesticides Could Keep Fruit Fresh Longer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/09/990924113856.htm
University Of Guelph. "Natural Pesticides Could Keep Fruit Fresh Longer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/09/990924113856.htm (accessed December 19, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Friday, December 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 18, 2014) The U.S. Navy unveils an underwater device that mimics the movement of a fish. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Kids Die While Under Protective Services

Kids Die While Under Protective Services

AP (Dec. 18, 2014) As part of a six-month investigation of child maltreatment deaths, the AP found that hundreds of deaths from horrific abuse and neglect could have been prevented. AP's Haven Daley reports. (Dec. 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Can fat disappear into thin air? New research finds that during weight loss, over 80 percent of a person's fat molecules escape through the lungs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Hottest Food Trends for 2015

The Hottest Food Trends for 2015

Buzz60 (Dec. 17, 2014) Urbanspoon predicts whicg food trends will dominate the culinary scene in 2015. Mara Montalbano (@maramontalbano) has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins