Response of beit alpha-type cucumbers (Cucumis sativus l., 'manar') to continuous ethylene exposure

Alfredo M. Villalta, Steve A. Sargent

Abstract


The effect of the continuous exposure of exogenous ethylene on the postharvest quality of Beit Alpha-type ('Manar') cucumbers (Cucumis sativus L.) was investigated using commercially grown cucumbers. Cucumbers were stored at 10 C, 95% relative humidity and exposed to 0 (compressed air only), 1, 5 or 10 ppm of ethylene for 12 days; when quality deterioration was evident at 1 ppm. The concentration of exogenous ethylene had a direct effect on the postharvest life of stored cucumbers. Concentrations of 10 ppm of ethylene reduced the shelf life by more than 50% to less than six days by primarily affecting pulp firmness. Concentrations of 5 ppm had the same effect but it took 9 days for deterioration on pulp integrity to be affected, while fruit exposed to 1 ppm was rendered unmarketable after 12 days due pulp softness and microbial rot. Ethylene had the effect of increasing the incidence of microbial rot on fruit treated with ethylene when compared to the control fruit.

Keywords


cucumis sativus; mini cucumbers; lebanese cucumbers; postharvest quality; storage

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Proc. Fla. State Hort. Soc.     ISSN 0886-7283