Signaling Molecules Involved in the Postharvest Stress Response of Plants Quality Changes and Synthesis of Secondary Metabolites

Authored by: Luis Cisneros-Zevallos , Daniel A. Jacobo-Velázquez , Jean-Claude Pech , Hisashi Koiwa

Handbook of Plant and Crop Physiology

Print publication date:  March  2014
Online publication date:  March  2014

Print ISBN: 9781466553286
eBook ISBN: 9781466553293
Adobe ISBN:


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It is well known that fruits and vegetables undergo a series of changes once harvested from the fields until their use by the consumers. In this process, typically fresh produce are harvested, transported to packing houses, lowered their temperature, conditioned or treated, sorted, packed, stored, transported, and displayed. The sequence and steps used will depend on the type of produce and market destination; however, the perishable nature of fresh produce defines their storage life. Through the past few decades, extensive research has been conducted to define optimal postharvest handling for shelf life extension of various commercial crops. Many available postharvest techniques developed are based on exposing these fresh produce to a diverse range of abiotic stresses. For example, temperature management, controlled atmospheres, modified atmospheres, ozone, ethylene treatments, minimal processing, and irradiation are based on controlling abiotic stresses like temperature, altered gas composition, use of chemicals/hormones, wounding, and radiation exposure, respectively. Other stresses that may have an impact on fresh produce, but their use on commercial technologies have not been implemented, include partial dehydration, gravitational exposure, and overall total pressure.

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