THREE MAIN PATHOGENS THAT AFFECT APPLES DURING STORAGE AND THEIR INFLUENCE ON FRUITS QUALITY
The postharvest pathogens that infect apples during storage period affect fruits quality and lead to important economic losses worldwide every year. Three appreciated apple varieties (Golden Delicious, Jonathan, Starkimson) have been evaluated for the incidence of main storage pathogens that operate in fruits (Penicillium expansum, Botrytis cinerea and Monilinia fructigena) and their impact on fruits quality. The results emphasized negative correlation between water content and dry matter for all apple varieties affected by storage pathogens. Despite the fact that were not significant differences between apple varieties, Golden Delicious has been recorded the lowest water content (74,62% for fruits affected by Penicillium expansum, 77,87% for fruits affected by Botrytis cinerea and 74,68% for fruits affected by Monilinia fructigena) and highest dry matter (24,63% for fruits affected by Penicillium expansum, 25,38% for fruits affected by Botrytis cinerea and 21,86% for fruits affected by Monilinia fructigena). Potassium and Phosphorus content decreased, while Iron content increased for all apple varieties affected by pathogens. The sugar content decreased with almost 20% for apple fruits, the lowest values for all varieties have been recorded in case of Botrytis cinerea and Monilinia fructigena attack. The highest raw protein values have been determined to all apple varieties affected by Monilinia fructigena (Golden Delicious 0,69g, Jonathan 0,89g and Starkimson 0,52g). The study revealed that apple quality during storage depends on the variety susceptibility, postharvest fruit health, fruit mineral composition, fungal inoculum and storage conditions.
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