Folia Horticulturae

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Effect of harvest date on apple fruit quality and storage ability

Nomeda Kvikliene

Lithuanian Institute of Horticulture
Babtai, Kaunas distr., Lithuania

In 1997-2000 at the Lithuanian Institute of Horticulture the following maturity parameters were evaluated to determine the optimum harvest date of apple cv. ‘Auksis’ - fruit weight, blush, firmness, soluble solids, and starch conversion stage. The apples for storage were harvested 5 times at weekly intervals before, during, and after the estimated optimum harvest date. The maturity index (F/RS) was calculated at each picking time. Quality changes, presence of storage disorders, mass losses, and sensory valuation were employed to estimate the optimum harvest date. It was found that apples picked too early tend to lose their mass and flesh firmness faster during storage, and had a lower content of soluble solids before and after storage. Apples picked too late showed more rot during storage. At the end of the storage period apples picked when the maturity index value was 0.15-0.20 were of the best quality.

Kvikliene N., 2001. Effect of harvest date on apple fruit quality and storage ability. Folia Horticulturae 13/2: 97-102.