MULTISEASON CITRUS SAMPLING SYSTEMS EVALUATION FOR FRUIT QUALITY

ROE, ERIC A.

Abstract


During the past 3 seasons (1995-1998), the performance of the four sampling systems utilized by the Florida citrus processing industry, namely the Kinsey, Flipgate, Slidegate, and Thumper (Pro-system) were evaluated for their effectiveness in collecting unbiased samples from truckloads of citrus. The samples obtained with these systems are used to determine the fruit quality characteristics, and therefore pricing of truckloads of citrus that are delivered to the processing plants. To ensure fairness of pricing, it is imperative that the actual content of a load of citrus be accurately represented by the sample collected by the sampling system in use. This study was conducted by the University of South Florida (USF) under contracts from the Florida Department of Citrus during the 1995-96, 1996-97, and 1997-98 seasons. USF obtained large, independent, and unbiased representative samples from truckloads of citrus and compared their physical and chemical properties with those of the corresponding state house samples obtained by the samplers. The 1995-96 season results show sampler differences based on size distribution. Results for the 1996-97 season describe the differences according to the juice characteristic parameters, namely, pounds solids per box and Brix. Both seasons' results show that all sampler types performed satisfactorily at one or more plant locations. However, overall results indicate that the Flipgate sampler can be ranked at the top and the bottom rank can be assigned to the Slidegate sampler. The analysis of variance conducted in the 1997-98 season showed that, at the 95% significance level, sampler performance could not be affected by pull-out belt speed or singulator mode.

Keywords


citrus; potassium nitrate; monopotassium phosphate; dipotassium phosphate; foliar fertilization; fruit size

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