Understanding Tree Fruit Quality Based on Consumer Acceptance
In recent years, we have been developing stone fruit quality indexes based on consumer acceptance and fruit market life with the main goal of increasing fruit consumption. To reach this goal we have taken the following steps: First, we conducted soluble solids concentration (SSC) and titratable acidity (TA) surveys, which indicated the potential fruit quality range for these cultivars within the industry. Second, we investigated the potential role of preharvest factors on these quality attributes. Third, we segregated cultivars according to a trained panel’s perception of the predominant sensory attributes: sweetness, sourness, and fruit flavor and aroma intensity. Finally, we used the above data to design large “in store” consumer tests within each sensory classification group. After completion of these steps, the industry will have the solid information it needs to propose a flavor code classification with fruit quality standards specific to each potential sensory classification group.