University of California-Davis researchers tested a Hazel Technologies product designed to slow the ripening of apricots and found it improved the shelf life of the fruit.
The subjects of the trial were late-season Patterson apricots grown near Yakima, Wash., by Gilbert Orchards. The Hazel Technologies product was applied at packing, and the fruit was shipped to California and held in retail conditions at UC Davis, according to a news release.
“We were able to show conclusively that apricot firmness was preserved by approximately 30-50% in apricots subjected to retail conditions when Hazel Apricot was used in the supply chain,” Angelos Deltsidis, associate director of the Postharvest Technology Center at UC Davis, said in the release. “Furthermore, there is some indication that skin reddening and red spotting can be reduced in the mature fruit when Hazel Apricot is applied.
“Our research center is committed to finding new postharvest solutions for crops with challenging shelf life, and we are pleased to be working with Hazel on this interesting addition to apricot shelf life technology,” Deltsidis said in the release.
The Hazel product is an in-box sachet that inhibits the action of ethylene.
“We are extremely pleased to report that UC Davis researchers saw significant increases in apricot firmness, even after release from 20 days in cold storage,” Adam Preslar, co-founder and chief technology officer of Hazel, said in the release. “Stone fruits have their own unique challenges in the fresh supply chain, and we are thrilled to offer the apricot and larger stone fruit industry a technology that can help growers and shippers provide top-quality fruit to the market. We look forward to partnering with UC Davis on more stone fruit trials.”