Quality of Banana (Musa acuminata cv. Lakatan) as Influenced by Maturity Stage and 1-Methylcyclopropene
Banana is a climacteric fruit that exhibits moderate ethylene production. Ethylene is the plant growth substance that promotes ripening. Ripening can be controlled to reduce postharvest losses. 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) concentration and maturity stage (mature green, light green) and their effects on the physicochemical quality of Lakatan bananas were examined at four-day intervals. Fruit were sanitized with 200 ppm sodium hypochlorite, air dried, treated with 200 ppm ethephon, treated with 1-MCP (100, 1000 nL·L–1) for 24 h, and subsequently stored at 20.67±0.34 °C and 85.33±6.40% RH until termination of shelf life. The two factors showed consistent effects in all parameters in which 1000 nL·L–1 1-MCP applied on mature green fruit resulted in delayed ripening by 2.3 d longer than the 100 nL·L–1 1-MCP. But 1-MCP concentration showed a more significant effect compared to the maturity stage. Banana treated with 100 nL·L–1 1-MCP reached visual quality (VQ) 3 (i.e., good, defects progressing) in 15 d relative to the control and an additional 6 d to achieve a full yellow color albeit less vibrant. The light green stage, the more advanced stage, reached VQ 3 two days earlier than mature green fruit. At day 25, 1000 nL·L–1 1-MCP treated fruit attained the yellow with green tips color stage with a low total soluble solids of 9.75 °Bx whereas the 100 nL·L–1 treatment appeared to show the preferred quality of less firm and sweeter (15 °Bx) fruit. The overall quality of mature green Lakatan banana fruit was maintained better and longer using 1-MCP at 100 nL·L–1.