Revista Facultad Nacional de Agronomía, Medellín
Print version ISSN 0304-2847
RODRIGUEZ RODRIGUEZ, Diana Alexandra et al. EFFECT OF TWO RIPENING STAGES AND TWO STORAGE TEMPERATURES ON THE POSTHARVEST BEHAVIOUR OF YELLOW PITAHAYA (Selenicereus megalanthus Haw.). Rev.Fac.Nal.Agr.Medellín [online]. 2005, vol.58, n.2, pp. 2839-2858. ISSN 0304-2847.
In order to evaluate the postharvest behaviour of yellow pitahaya, 60 kg of fruit harvested at ripening stage 3, as determined by the CENICAFE colour scale (ICONTEC NTC 3554), were stored, of which 30 kg were placed in a room at 19 °C and the remaining 30 kg were placed in refrigerated storage at 8 °C; similarly, the same procedure was conducted with 60 kg of fruit harvested at ripening stage 5. The physical properties of stage 3 fruits changed little, while chemical properties varied over time, responding to the ripening process. Fruits stored at 8 °C had a longer shelf life (19 days). However, after this time, chill injury was apparent in 50 % of the fruits. Fruits at 8 and 19 °C exhibited increases in pH and the ripening index went from 3 to 5 up to 5 to 6 by the end of the storage. Likewise, titratable acid decreased in stage 3 from 2,54 % to 1,50 %, and from 3,02 % to 1,29 %, at 19 and 8 ºC, respectively. Water percentage of the stage 3 fruit decreased 3 and 1,10 % at 19 and 8 ºC; and decreased in stage 5 fruits 2,54 and 0,51 % at 19 and 8 ºC, respectively. ºBrix exhibited erratic behavior. Fruits harvested at ripening stage 5 did not exhibit important physicochemical changes and their longevities were lower, due in part to fruit basal end-rot caused by Fusarium sp. Therefore, it is suggested that fruit be harvested at ripening stage 3 and stored at temperatures below ambient ( 19 °C) and above 8 °C.
Keywords : Yellow pitahaya; ripening; respiration; longevity; chilling injury.