Influence of Anti-Browning Inhibitors and Biodegradable Packaging on the Quality of Fresh-Cut Pears

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Pears usually are used as ingredients in the production of fresh-cut fruit salads. Fruit browning in the food industry is one of the main problems, and therefore, different anti-browning inhibitors are used to maintain the quality of fresh-cut pears. The aim of this study was to evaluate the use of Japanese quince (Chaenomeles japonica) juice (QJ) as an anti-browning agent for the pear (Pyrus communis) cultivar ‘Belorusskaya Pozdnaya’ and to compare its effect to that of ascorbic acid (AA) solution, which is typically used as an anti-browning agent. In addition, the effect of biodegradable packaging material on quality of treated pears during storage was assessed, in comparison with packaging in conventional polymer pouches. Diluted 20% Japanese quince juice and 1.5% ascorbic acid solution were used as inhibitors of pear browning. Produce quality during storage of fresh-cut pears for ten days using biodegradable polilactid (PLA) containers with lids and VC999 BioPack PLA films coated with a barrier of pure silicon oxide (SiOx) was compared with that using conventional packaging with polyethylene (PE) film as a control. The quality of pears during storage was estimated by changes of colour brightness value L*, whitening index (WI), firmness (N), pH value and total soluble solid content (Brix o). The results showed that colour of fresh-cut pears was maintained better using biodegradable packaging materials and using the control anti-browning agent ascorbic acid. After nine storage days, the brightness L* value of fresh cut pears was significantly lower when conventional packaging material (PE film pouches) and treatment with Japanese quince juice was used.

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