Postharvest application of 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) extends shelf life of kiwifruit
The role of postharvest application of 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) in the softening of ‘Hayward’ kiwifruit under different cold storage conditions was investigated. 1-MCP treated fruit (0.0, 0.5, 1.0 μl L-1) were kept in cold storage (1°C) up to 6 months before ripening. Different 1-MCP application times were also tested in this trial (12 and 24 h). Effect of 1-MCP under ethylene-free atmosphere and under ethylene contaminated atmosphere during storage was investigated. Under both conditions, 1-MCP treatment significantly delayed the rate of fruit softening during cold storage. Firmness out of cold storage was significantly increased by 1- MCP treatments. Moreover, the number of days of shelf life at 20°C (after 4 and 6 months of cold storage at 1°C) needed by ‘Hayward’ kiwifruit to reach a flesh firmness ≤10 N was significantly increased by 1-MCP postharvest treatment. These data show that 1-MCP treatment recommendations for an optimal result depend on both the length of cold storage as well as ethylene contamination of the atmosphere during storage.