Blueberry harvesting is the full swing in Northern Hemisphere. The blue fruits business in both hemispheres may soon have an innovative tool for extending seasonality and reducing food waste. The results of trials conducted on blueberries after using innovative technology with a patented 1-MCP delivery system indicated a slower ripening effect. Treated blueberries kept very good eating quality and firmness for the full 49 days of the test.
The global blueberry market was valued at over $8 billion (according to IndexBox in 2021). It is expected to grow and reach 2.3 million tons by 2030. The forecast for the growth of the blueberry business is optimistic, but the industry has to face some challenges. Seasonality for fresh fruits is one of them. Can we “buy” more time for blueberry producers?
“Research underscores the potential of the Vidre+™ technology, which can bring time management flexibility and the ability to deliver fresher blueberries across extended supply chain routes. The technology has demonstrated a positive impact on freshly harvested blueberries, which is marked by reduced weight loss, improved overall quality, extended fruit firmness, and better retention of essential elements like Vitamin C and antioxidants.” – says Tim Malefyt, Ph.D., CTO at Fresh Inset.
Vidre+™ technology is a patented system for 1-MCP to begin release 1-2 hours after packaging and gradually release within the packaging itself over 30 hours via a simple-to-use sticker. The release of the product is triggered by humidity within the packaged product. This cutting-edge technology can now protect ethylene – a gas and natural plant hormone that plays an important role both in ripening and fruit softening/degradation. It is already used in Argentina and is awaiting regulatory approval in key food production markets including the Americas.
The trials were commissioned by Fresh Inset and led by Dorota Wichrowska, Ph.D., from the University of Science and Technology in Poland during the summer season of 2022. Results have demonstrated the impact of Vidre+™ technology on blueberries.
Blueberries treated with 1-MCP Vidre+™ stickers lost less weight and kept better eating quality and firmness for a longer time compared to untreated ones.
- Throughout the test period, treatments with Vidre+™ exhibited a 2-3% reduction in weight loss compared to the untreated group.
- Treated fruits maintained excellent eating quality throughout 35 days of the experiment and kept very good eating quality for the full 49 days of the test.
- Untreated fruits began to soften after 21 days vs. after 35 days for treated frui
- After 28 days in cold storage, treated blueberries had 83% more Vitamin C and 33% higher antioxidant levels
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