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The objective of this study was to determine the influence of irradiation-induced physiological responses on quality parameters in ‘Fuji’ apples. Apples were treated at 377 and 1148 Gy, stored for 7 days at 1 °C to mimic ground transportation to Mexico and another 7 days at ambient temperature to simulate retail and consumer storage conditions. Irradiation suppressed ethylene production, especially in the 1148 Gy treated apples, which was consistent with lower activities of 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate oxidase (ACO). A dose-dependent increase in respiration rate corresponded with decreases in titratable acidity (TA) and organic acids. Higher electrolyte leakage in apples irradiated at the 1148 Gy dose was not related to Malondialdehyde (MDA) content, which was unaffected by irradiation. Irradiation lessened aroma volatile content at 1148 Gy but there was much lesser affect at the 377 Gy dose. Loss of firmness was the only major quality attribute impacted, but consumers could not tell the difference between control and apples treated at 377 Gy in terms of flavor and visual quality. Irradiation at doses 377 Gy or lower could be used as an alternative to conventional phytosanitary treatments for Fuji apples destined to Mexico.


NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Radiation Physics and Chemistry. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Radiation Physics and Chemistry in 2019. DOI: 10.1016/j.radphyschem.2019.108389

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