Charles Forney et al., VIII International Postharvest Symposium
Maintaining food flavor and aroma of fresh tomato fruit can be challenging. Storage temperature affects the synthesis of aroma volatiles and holding fruit at chilling temperatures can inhibit volatile synthesis.
To gain a greater understanding of the role temperature plays in volatile formation during postharvest storage and ripening of tomato, volatile profiles were assessed over a range of temperatures and storage times.
Greenhouse grown tomatoes of the cv. Trust were harvested at the pink to light red stage and held at 1, 10, 18 or 24ºC and 85% RH. Fruit were sampled for volatile analysis after 0, 3, 6, 10 and 13 d. In addition, at each sampling time fruit were held for an additional 3 or 10 d at 20ºC and then sampled for volatile analysis. Volatiles were analyzed from homogenized fruit tissue using headspace-GC-MS.
Total volatile concentrations in tomato fruit increased about 3-fold after 10 or more days at 18ºC.
The most abundant volatile compounds in fruit held for 10 d at 18ºC included hexanal, followed by 2-methyl butanol, trans-2-hexenal, 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-one, 3-methyl butanal, 2-isobutylthiazole, 3-methyl butanol, geranyl acetone, beta-ionone, and pentanal.
Little change in volatile composition occurred in fruit held at 1 or 10ºC for 10 d. However, when fruit held for 3 d at 1 or 10ºC were warmed to 20ºC for an additional 10 d, total volatile concentration increased 6- and 4-fold, respectively when compared to initial values.
In addition, volatile composition was similar to that in fruit held at 18ºC, but concentrations were higher.
When fruit held for 10 d at 1ºC were warmed to 20ºC for an additional 10 d, volatile synthesis was inhibited, whereas fruit held 10 d at 10ºC and warmed to 20ºC developed volatile profiles similar to non-chilled fruit.
Fruit held at 24ºC for 10 d had volatile concentrations similar to those from fruit held at 18ºC.
While tomato fruit can tolerate chilling temperatures for short durations, prolonged exposures to temperatures below 10ºC should be avoided since they can inhibit aroma volatile synthesis and thus impact tomato flavor.
The interaction of storage temperature and duration on aroma volatiles in tomato fruit
Charles Forney1, Denyse LeBlanc1, Clément Vigneault2, Vicky Toussaint3, Gaétan Bourgeois3, Alain Clément4, Gregory Bezanson1
1Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, 32 Main Street, Kentville Nova Scotia, B4N 1J5, Canada
2Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, 430 Gouin Boulevard, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu Quebec J2Y 1C4, Canada
3Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, 430 Gouin Boulevard, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu Quebec J3B 3E6, Canada
4Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, 3600 Casavant Blvd W, Saint-Hyacinthe Quebec J2S 8E3, Canada
VIII International Postharvest Symposium, Cartagena, Spain, 21-24 June 2016
Picture by Akira Seeds