Authors: R.R. Sharma & Smruthi Jayarajan
Division of Food Science and Postharvest Technology
ICAR- Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi-110 012
Nectarine (Prunus persica var. nectarina) is a smooth-skinned peach belonging to family Rosaceae. Nectarines have arisen from peach tree spontaneously as bud sport. In fact, nectarine is considered as a natural mutant of peach. The expression of a recessive allele is thought to be responsible for the smooth peel of nectarine fruits. Nectarines are grown throughout the warmer temperate regions of both the Northern and Southern hemispheres between latitudes 30ᵒand 45ᵒN and S. Nectarines have red, yellow, or white pulp but most varieties of nectarine bear attractive red colour of varying shades. Its fruits contain fairly good amount of antioxidants vitamins such as C, A, E and flavonoids, polyphenolic antioxidants like lutien, zeaxanthin and Beta-cryptoxanthin.
Due to its smoothness and attractive colour, nectarine fruits are becoming popular among consumers and hence, peach orchards are being replaced by nectarine at a faster rate in different parts of India. It is commercially cultivated in Himachal Pradesh, Uttharakand, Jammu and Kashmir and some regions of Meghalaya. The best quality nectarines are obtained from Ramgarh areas of Nainital (Uttrakhand) and Rajgarh areas of Himachal Pradesh. Major constraint in nectarine handling is its limited shelf life of about 3-4 days at ambient conditions which can be extended up to 2-3 weeks under cold storage condition (0-2° C, 85-90 % RH). However, such facilities are lacking in India, and if facilities are available, continuous supply of electricity is still a problem in several parts. There are several postharvest interventions to enhance the storage life of fresh fruits but among them most convenient and economical method is the in-package use of ethylene absorbent sachets. Hence, we have attempted the use of KMnO4 based ethylene absorbent sachets which were placed inside the packing boxes during the transportation of 'Silver Queen' nectarine.
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About Author / Additional Info:
Working on production and postharvest management of fruits and vegetables for the last 32 years. I have published more that 130 research articles in journals of international repute. Authored 12 books, 250 popular articles and received several awards and honours of ICAR and Govt. of India