Assessing the eating quality of muskmelon varieties using sensory evaluation

Amy Simonne, Sandrine Cazaux, Eric Simonne, Kimberly Kouri, David Studstill, Robert Hochmuth, Suzanne Stapleton, Wayne Davis, Merry Taylor


Muskmelon may be an economical alternative crop for Florida because of a favorable marketing window. The objective of this study was to determine consumer preferences among six varieties of Eastern (E), Western (W) and Galia (G)- types. Melons were grown during the springs of 2001 and 2002 at the North Florida Research and Education Center- Suwannee Valley, near Live Oak, Fla., on a Lakeland fine sand soil and following IFAS recommendations for cucurbit production. The taste tests were conducted in June following the guidelines and recommendations from the American Society of Testing Materials. Panelists were commercial vegetable growers, master gardeners, extension personnel, and field day participants. Panelists recorded their crunchiness, sweetness, flavor and overall preference scores by making a mark on a 90- mm long, unstructured line with anchors. The industry standard 'Athena' was top rated in flavor and overall preference in 2001, but was only ranked fourth overall. The overall top three rated varieties were 'Mission' (W), 'Odyssey' (E), and 'Inbar' (G). The eating quality of 'Passport' (G) was consistently below median values. The interaction between year and sensory attributes was significant, suggesting that conditions other than soil type and variety, and possibly including weather conditions, affected consumer preference. These panels preferred the sensory characteristics of the eastern-type and orangefleshed varieties over those of the western-type and greenfleshed ones, respectively.


cucumis melo; cantaloupe; taste panel

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