Published in Applied Research
Development of a new essential oil-based technology to maintain fruit quality in tomato


In a study published in Horticulturae journal, a new technology was tested by Spanish Researchers for its efficacy in the conservation of tomato fruits. 

An initial experiment was conducted to determine the effects of eugenol on the main quality parameters of Raf tomato fruits; then, a main experiment was performed to test the effectiveness of the new technology. In both experiments, fruits of the tomato cultivar Raf at the mature green stage were used. The preliminary experiment demonstrated the effectiveness of eugenol in maintaining fruit quality during the postharvest life of the fruit. In the main experiment, the fruits were packed using a sachet filled with a mixture consisting of 10:1:1 clinoptilolite clay, ground clove buds, and activated charcoal. This mixture was evaluated against a commercial ethylene scavenger composed mainly of KMnO4-impregnated sepiolite. Three lots of fruits were used: one batch was considered as the control, where the fruits were not packed but kept in an open box at room temperature. The fruits in the other two batches were packed in 2 L PET containers with lids at a rate of three fruits per container, and a sachet of ground cloves and a commercial scavenger was added inside each container in each batch. The containers were kept at room temperature, and the following main quality parameters were analyzed: ethylene production rate, firmness, color, content of soluble solids, and pigments. 

The results showed that ground clove buds led to a reduction in ethylene production which was associated with a delay in maturation and could be a good alternative for use in the active fruit packaging of horticultural products. 

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