Edible Coating Keeps Guavas Fresh by Managing Natural Processes

Jenn Hoskins
24th May, 2024

Edible Coating Keeps Guavas Fresh by Managing Natural Processes

Image Source: Natural Science News, 2024

Key Findings

  • Researchers at Bahauddin Zakariya University found that xanthan gum (XG) coatings can extend the shelf life of guava fruits by reducing moisture loss and decay
  • The study showed that guavas coated with 0.75% XG had the least weight loss and highest firmness retention over a 15-day storage period
  • XG coatings also delayed changes in skin color and maintained higher levels of titratable acidity and ascorbic acid, which are important for fruit quality
Guava, a tropical fruit, is known for its rapid spoilage post-harvest, primarily due to swift physicochemical changes. This leads to significant losses, making it crucial to find effective methods to extend its shelf life. A recent study conducted by researchers at Bahauddin Zakariya University explored the use of xanthan gum (XG) coatings at different concentrations (0.25%, 0.5%, and 0.75%) to prolong the freshness of guava fruits (Gola cultivar) over a 15-day storage period[1]. The focus of this study is on xanthan gum, a natural polysaccharide used as a food additive for its stabilizing and thickening properties. The researchers aimed to determine whether XG coatings could effectively delay the ripening process and maintain the quality of guava fruits during storage. Previous studies have shown the potential of various edible coatings to extend the shelf life of fruits. For instance, hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) combined with beeswax was found to create a modified atmosphere around guavas, delaying the ripening process and extending shelf life by up to 6 days[2]. Similarly, chitosan coatings were effective in suppressing the respiratory rate and delaying the degradation of chlorophyll in guavas, thus maintaining their quality for up to 96 hours[3]. Carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC) coatings have also been shown to reduce weight loss and disease incidence in mangoes, delaying the climacteric peak of ethylene and respiration rate, which are critical factors in the ripening process[4]. In the current study, the researchers applied XG coatings at concentrations of 0.25%, 0.5%, and 0.75% to guava fruits and monitored their quality over 15 days. The results indicated that the XG coatings were effective in reducing weight loss and maintaining firmness compared to uncoated guavas. The 0.75% XG coating was particularly effective, showing the least weight loss and highest firmness retention. The study also observed that the XG coatings delayed the changes in skin color and maintained higher levels of titratable acidity and ascorbic acid, which are important indicators of fruit quality. These findings are consistent with the results of previous studies that demonstrated the efficacy of other edible coatings in maintaining fruit quality by delaying ripening and reducing metabolic activity[2][3][4]. The mechanism behind the effectiveness of XG coatings is similar to that of other coatings like HPMC, chitosan, and CMC. These coatings create a semi-permeable barrier around the fruit, which modifies the internal atmosphere by reducing oxygen and increasing carbon dioxide levels. This modified atmosphere slows down the respiration rate and ethylene production, both of which are key factors in the ripening process. Additionally, the coatings help in retaining moisture, thereby reducing weight loss and maintaining firmness. In conclusion, the study by Bahauddin Zakariya University provides compelling evidence that xanthan gum coatings can effectively extend the shelf life of guava fruits by delaying ripening and maintaining quality attributes. This finding aligns with previous research on the use of edible coatings for prolonging the freshness of various fruits, thereby offering a promising solution to reduce postharvest losses in guavas.



Main Study

1) Xanthan gum-based edible coating effectively preserve postharvest quality of ‘Gola’ guava fruits by regulating physiological and biochemical processes

Published 23rd May, 2024


Related Studies

2) Use of edible coatings based on hydroxypropyl methylcellulose and beeswax in the conservation of red guava 'Pedro Sato'.


3) Chitosan delays ripening and ROS production in guava (Psidium guajava L.) fruit.


4) Carboxymethyl cellulose coating delays ripening of harvested mango fruits by regulating softening enzymes activities.


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