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2003, Review-New Advances in Extending the Shelf-life of Fresh-cut Fruits

2003, Review-New Advances in Extending the Shelf-life of Fresh-cut Fruits

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01/09/2013

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New advances inextending the shelf-life of fresh-cutfruits: a review
Robert C. Soliva-Fortuny andOlga Martı ´n-Belloso*
Department of Food Technology, UTPV-CeRTA,University of Lleida, Av. Alcalde Rovira Roure 191,25198 Lleida, Spain (tel.: +34-973-702593; fax: +34-973-702596; e-mail: omartin@tecal.udl.es)
Minimally processed products are one of the major growingsegments in food retail establishments. However, fresh-cutfruits are still under study because of the difficulties in pre-serving their fresh-like quality during prolonged periods.This paper intends to review the most significant contribu-tions regarding preservation of fresh-cut fruits without asignificant modification of its sensorial properties and pro-vides an overview about the last published advances. Itcovers aspects concerning conditions suggested by authorsin each one of the processing steps such as washing, sani-tation, cutting, dipping treatments and/or preservationunder modified atmospheres, as well as those works study-ing the influence of these operations on the shelf life andquality extension of fresh-cut fruit products without mod-ification of their sensorial properties.
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2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Introduction
The importance of minimally processed commoditiesin the retail groceries of most developed countries hasbeen rising continuously during the last few years(Wiley, 1997). Once traditional processing technologieshave been able to provide microbiologically safe foodproducts with acceptable quality characteristics, thenext step forward is to design mild but reliable newtreatments in order to achieve fresh-like quality pro-ducts with a high nutritional value. The growingdemand for slightly processed products with the sameguarantees of innocuousness than those treated by tra-ditional methods of preservation has urged researchersto focus most of their efforts on studying new ways of extending the shelf life of fresh-cut products.Fresh-cut produce graduated to retail during the1990s, especially for lettuce, cabbage, carrots and otheranalogous vegetables (Brody, 2002). The high microbialloads of these products after harvest can be sub-stantially reduced through a cleaning in flowing chlori-nated water and a distribution under ensured controlledrefrigeration (Ahvenainen, 1996). Therefore, a goodnumber of convenient ready-to-use greens were laun-ched to the market in the past decade.Nowadays, the use of this technology to achievesimilar results in fruit products is one of the most chal-lenging targets for processors. However, there is anumber of issues that still need to be overcome beforefresh-cut fruit commodities can be sparked off to anoutstanding position in the segment of lightly-treatedrefrigerated foods.The physiology of minimally processed products isessentially that of wounded tissues. The intensity of thewound response is affected by a great number of factors.Species and variety, O
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0924-2244/03/$ - see front matter
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2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.doi:10.1016/S0924-2244(03)00054-2
Trends in Food Science & Technology 14 (2003) 341–353
Review
* Corresponding author.
 
Impact of processing operations on fresh-cut fruittissues
Washing and sanitizing operations
Sanitation of whole fruits is conducted generally withan initial rinse in tap water to eliminate pesticide resi-dues, plant debris and other possible contamination,followed by a dip in chlorinated water to reduce effec-tively the microbial loads on the fruit surface. Chlorineis normally used for the disinfection of the fruit surfaceby adding sodium hypoclorite (NaOCl) to the washwater. Dips in water from 50 to 200 ppm of added freechlorine are commonly used in literature for pomefruits, either before processing or during pre- and post-cutting operations (Bett
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Mechanical operations
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R. C. Soliva-Fortuny, O. Martı ´n-Belloso/Trends in Food Science & Technology 14 (2003) 341–353
 
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1-MCP treatments, especially when applied beforecoring and slicing, markedly reduced ethylene produc-tion throughout 10 days storage.Especial attention must be paid in some fruits such asapples or pears during cutting operations. Hence, thecore and adjacent tissues should be completely removedbecause susceptibility to browning is much higher thanin other parts of the fruit. Another interesting con-sideration concerns the peeling of fruits.Agar, Massan-tini, Hess-Pierce, and Kader (1999)observed that peelingand slicing of kiwifruit caused an increase of more than30% in mass loss after 3 daysstorage in comparison withunpeeled slices, but the effects of wounding on the ethy-lene and CO
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Dipping treatments
Surface treatments are necessary to delay physiologi-cal decay in fruit tissues, thus stabilising the fruit surfaceand preventing degradative processes that curb thequality of the product. Firstly, dipping treatments arebeneficial because the enzymes and substrates releasedfrom injured cells during cutting operations are rinsedfrom the product surface.Dipping times range from 1 to 5 min in most pub-lished works.Luna-Guzman, Cantwell, and Barrett(1999), who studied the influence of CaCl
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C. The effects of these treatments on thefruit surface are also subject to the solution pH. LowpH values are usually recommended because of theiranti-microbial properties (Wiley, 1997). However, insome cases it may be necessary to adjust pH at highervalues, near neutrality, for example when using cysteine,which otherwise would confer undesirable pinkish-redcoloured compounds to the fruit tissue (Gorny, Hess-Pierce, Cifuentes, & Kader, 2002; Sapers & Miller,1998).Drying of wet surfaces must be carried out carefullyto avoid unnecessary damage to the fruit tissue. Mostauthors suggest water removal by draining. The excesswater must be completely dried to avoid problems withmicrobial spoilage of the fruit surface. Therefore, othermethods of drying the cut surfaces have been proposed,like spinning with care or gentle drying with cheesecloth(Bett
Modified atmosphere packaging
The beneficial effects of modified atmosphere packa-ging (MAP) for fresh-cut produce have been extensivelyreviewed byAhvenainen (1996) and Solomos (1997).Depleted O
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R. C. Soliva-Fortuny, O. Martı ´n-Belloso/Trends in Food Science & Technology 14 (2003) 341–353
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