Pg. 31-37 Evaluation of the Post-harvest Characteristics of Litchi Fruit from the Cultivar Development Program: 2000/2001

The post-harvest evaluation of new cultivars and selections is crucial to ensure that only exportable cultivars with an adequate shelf life are recommended. This work is a continuation of a program started during the two previous seasons and this year included ‘Fay Zee Siu’, ‘Kwai May Pink’, ‘Haak Yip’ ‘Wai Chee’, ‘Nuomici’, ‘Souey Tung’, ‘Brewster’, ‘Salathiel’and ‘Bidum’, which were compared with the widely grown cultivars ‘HLH Mauritius’ and ‘McLean’s Red’. External colour retention when sulfur fumigated was found to be acceptable in all the new cultivars. Internally, all the cultivars were acceptable except for ‘Kwai May Pink’ , ‘Bidum’ and ‘Salathiel’ which showed aril discoloration which effectively disqualifies these cultivars. ‘Haak Yip’ and ‘HLH Mauritius’ produced the best results in terms of percentage mass loss. ‘Haak Yip’ and ‘HLH Mauritius’, ‘Souey Tung’, ‘Nuomici’ and ‘Wai Chee’ performed acceptably in terms of firmness retention. ‘Brewster’ and ‘Bidum’ disappointed with proneness to fungal infection. With regard to sulphur fumigation, ‘McLean’s Red’, ‘Bid um’, ‘Salathiel’ and ‘Brewster’ exhibited unacceptably high residues in the aril after 25 days of cold storage. ‘HLH Mauritius’, ‘Haak Yip’, ‘Kwai May Pink’ and ‘Souey Tung’ obtained values lower than the set limit of lOppm, while ‘Fay Zee Sui’, ‘Nuomici’ and ‘Wai Chee’ obtained slightly higher values. The different cultivars were also treated with “Acid B”, the treatment developed by the ARC-ITSC for ‘HLH Mauritius’ fruit. Unfortunately, most cultivars reacted less favourably than ‘HLH Mauritius’. ‘Haak Yip’ was the only not showing a high degree of aril browning and/or developed undesirable after tastes when treated with this acid.

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