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MARZIA INGRASSIA

Sensory Evaluation and Suitability for Fresh-Cut Produce of White Peach [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch] ‘Settembrina di Bivona’

  • Authors: Sortino, G.; Ingrassia, M.; Allegra, A.; Inglese, P.
  • Publication year: 2015
  • Type: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)
  • OA Link: http://hdl.handle.net/10447/144472

Abstract

‘Settembrina di Bivona’ peaches were cut into slices to assess their suitability as fresh-cut produce. Untreated (control) and treated with calcium lactate fresh cut slices were closed in plastic boxes for 24 hours (T1) or five days of storage (T2) at 5°C, and then placed at 20°C to assess consumers’ liking. Soluble solids content, titratable acidity, firmness and pH were measured. A sample of n = 750 consumers was selected taking into consideration three variables: age (from 25 to 55 years old), professional status (employed) and aptitude to buy fresh-cut fruit for personal use. A systematic sampling was used, with a detection point based in a properly selected supermarket during the peak hours. Respondents were asked to give a score to the fresh-cut fruit, offered blindcoded, at the two different times after cutting (T1 and T2), for four sensory parameters: visual appearance, flavor, crunchiness and taste. The results showed that slices treated with calcium lactate, after 5 days of storage, received the highest rating for all the parameters considered, and, in particular, regarding flavor, crunchiness, and taste. The high suitability of the white peach ‘Settembrina di Bivona’ to maintain, after the treatment with calcium lactate, its organoleptic requirements and taste, according to consumers, shows that this cultivar has excellent potential as fresh-cut produce. Consumers’ ratings did not depend on changes in either soluble solids content or titratable acidity, or firmness and pH, that changed marginally during the fruit storage period, but were highly related to visual score. The more the fruit slices lost their brightness and external browning increased, the more it decreased consumers’ ratings for flavor and taste.