STAFF REPORT IBD: The Pakistan Science Foundation (PSF) is developing techniques of pre and post-harvest treatments of food grade chemicals to improve peach quality and shelf-life. The main objective of this project is to optimize the different concentrations of food grade chemicals for improving the fruit quality and minimizing the risk of residues.
“This project would help to investigate the possible effects of preharvest application of food grade chemicals on postharvest fruit quality,” said PSF spokesperson Rehana Batool while talking to this scribe.
She said although fruit quality could only be maintained, not improved, after harvest, little emphasis has been given on the influence of preharvest factors that determine the ultimate postharvest quality of fruits.
Pre-harvest factors often interact in complex ways that depend on specific cultivar characteristics and growth or development stage sensitivities.
Ripening can be slowed down by cold storage. However, cold storage life of peach is frequently limited by chilling injury (CI) and loss of quality, she said.
Rehana also said that the search for alternative treatments that would delay fruit ripening is the most important issue for growers, researchers and exporters.
On the other hand, food safety is a major concern shared by consumers, industry and governments, she said, adding protecting public health was a critical factor associated with the food supply.
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