Combined application of ascorbic and oxalic acids delays postharvest browning of litchi fruits under controlled atmosphere conditions.


Ali S(1), Sattar Khan A(2), Ullah Malik A(3), Anwar R(3), Akbar Anjum M(1), Nawaz A(1), Shafique M(4), Naz S(1).
Author information:
(1)Department of Horticulture, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences and Technology, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan, Pakistan.
(2)Institute of Horticultural Sciences, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan. Electronic address: [Email]
(3)Institute of Horticultural Sciences, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan.
(4)University of Agriculture, Sub Campus Burewala, Pakistan.


The effect of ascorbic acid [AA (40 mmol L-1)] and oxalic acid [OA (2 mmol L-1)] on browning of litchi fruit was investigated under 5% CO2 + 1% O2 controlled atmosphere (CA) and compared with air at 5 ± 1 °C for 28 days. The combined application of AA and OA suppressed browning index, soluble quinones, and activities of polyphenol oxidase and peroxidase under CA compared with control. The combination of CA along with AA + OA reduced weight loss and maintained higher anthocyanins, total phenolics, membrane integrity, ascorbate peroxidase, catalase, glutathione reductase and superoxide dismutase activities compared with control. In addition, AA + OA + CA combination showed markedly lower malondialdehyde, superoxide anion and hydrogen peroxide with substantially higher soluble solids content, ascorbic acid, titratable acidity and sensory quality compared with control. In conclusion, AA + OA combination could be considered appropriate to delay browning and to conserve litchi fruit visual appearance under CA storage conditions.