OpenFields

Hot water treatment after harvest preserves nutritional quality of spinach during storage.

This study has investigated the effect of postharvest high temperature treatments on nutritional quality changes in spinach during subsequent storage.

Year of Publication2011

The concentration of antioxidants in fresh produce is important in terms of human nutrition. The main antioxidants found in relatively high concentrations in leafy vegetables are ascorbic acid (AsA), carotenoids and flavonoids. There is an increasing interest in finding ways to improve nutritional quality of vegetables by increasing or maintaining antioxidant content during storage. This study has investigated the effect of postharvest high temperature treatments on nutritional quality changes in spinach during subsequent storage. AsA was determined by HPLC and spectrophotometric measurements were taken to quantify changes in chlorophyll and carotenoid concentration during storage. Hot water (40˚C) treatment reduces AsA loss during storage of spinach. However, the treatment has only been effective in the case of spinach leaves subsequently stored at 0˚C, while in spinach leaves stored at 6˚C this effect was lost. Furthermore, hot water treatment was found to enhance total carotenoid concentration after 7 days of storage compared to untreated leaves. In contrast, the concentration of AsA in hot air (40˚C) treated samples decreased when compared to untreated leaves, while the concentration of total carotenoids remained the same. In conclusion, hot water (40˚C) treatment can potentially be used for nutritional quality improvement of spinach. Physiological processes induced by hot water treatment require further investigation.

This item is categorised as follows

Additional keywords/tags

Organisation Logo for Harper Adams University

Supporting the development of the national rural economy.

Website

What Next...?

This is a brief summary of an item in the OpenFields Library. This free online library contains items of interest to practitioners and researchers in the agricultural and landbased industries.