Comparison of alternative postharvest quarantine treatments for sweet cherries

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The effects of controlled atmosphere heat treatments (CATTS) and irradiation on sweet cherry fruit quality were compared to fumigation with methyl bromide. ‘Bing’ and ‘Rainier’ sweet cherry varieties were tested from the Yakima and Wenatchee, WA growing areas. Irradiated cherries had overall quality better than methyl bromide-treated cherries. CATTS-treated ‘Rainier’ cherries, but not ‘Bing’, had more pitting and bruising after 14 days of storage than fruit from other treatments. Both cultivars treated with methyl bromide had poorer stem quality than controls. CATTS-treated ‘Bing’ fruits had poorer stem quality after 7 and 14 days of storage than the controls. This research demonstrated that both irradiation and CATTS have potential for alternative quarantine treatments for sweet cherries.

Lisa G. Neven
Stephen R. Drake
Postharvest Biology and Technology