The effect of chlorine dioxide and chitosan/essential oil coatings on the safety and quality of fresh blueberries

Xiuxiu Sun, Kequan Zhou, Jan Narciso, Christopher Ference, Jinhe Bai

Abstract


Blueberries are high-value fruit having strong antioxidant capacity and health-promoting benefits. Controlled-release of ClO2 pads and chitosan coating incorporated with 0.5% of carvacrol (CAR) or trans-cinnamaldehyde (ECIN) were applied to fresh blueberries to preserve their quality and ensure microbial safety during postharvest storage. Fruit firmness and microbial populations were monitored during storage. There were approximately a 2 log reduction in the population of bacteria and yeasts/molds in the blueberries after eight days of storage at 10 °C when comparing any of treated fruit with the control. Controlled-release ClO2 pads and chitosan coating incorporated with 0.5% of CAR or ECIN also maintained the firmness of blueberries. Our results suggest that controlled-release ClO2 and chitosanessential oil coatings are effective in extending the shelf life of fresh blueberries

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