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Controlled Atmosphere and Modified Atmosphere Storage Dr. Ron Porat Dept. of Postharvest Science of Fresh Produce ARO, The Volcani Center, Bet Dagan, Israel.

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Presentation on theme: "Controlled Atmosphere and Modified Atmosphere Storage Dr. Ron Porat Dept. of Postharvest Science of Fresh Produce ARO, The Volcani Center, Bet Dagan, Israel."— Presentation transcript:

1 Controlled Atmosphere and Modified Atmosphere Storage Dr. Ron Porat Dept. of Postharvest Science of Fresh Produce ARO, The Volcani Center, Bet Dagan, Israel

2 Normal room air contains 21% O 2 and 0.03% CO 2. However, it was found that low oxygen and high carbon dioxide levels slow ripening, reduce the development of some peel disorders and inhibit pathogen growth.

3 The terms controlled atmosphere (CA) and modified atmosphere (MA) imply using an atmospheric compositions that is different from air, but they differ in the degree of their control of the gases concentrations. Control atmosphere (CA) – generally refers to decreased O 2 and increased CO 2 concentrations, by a precise control of the gas composition. Modified atmosphere (MA) – is used when the control of the storage atmosphere is not closely controlled, such as in plastic film packaging.

4 CA and MA are usually used as a supplement to cold storage, but in some cases they may replace cold storage.

5 Potential benefits of CA: 1) Retardation of ripening and senescence. 2) Inhibits ethylene effects. 3) Reduction of certain physiological disorders. 4) Inhibition of pathogen growth. 5) May be used for insect control.

6 Potential harmful effects of CA: 1) May cause irregular ripening after storage. 2) May cause certain physiological disorders. 3) May enhance anaerobic respiration and development of off-flavors. 4) May cause susceptibility to decay.

7 Fruits and vegetables differ in their tolerance to low O 2 and to high CO 2 concentrations. Extreme oxygen and carbon dioxide concentrations (above the limits for each cultivar) may cause physiological and pathological deterioration, interrupt with normal ripening and enhance anaerobic respiration and development of off-flavors.

8 Tolerance of various commodities to low O 2 concentrations

9 Tolerance of various commodities to high CO 2 concentrations

10 Fruits and vegetables can be grouped according to their storage potential under optimum temperature, RH and CA conditions as followed: Up to 1 year – apple and pear Up to 6 months – kiwi, persimmon, pomegranate Up to 3 months – avocado, banana, cherry, grape, mango, nectarine, peach, plum Up to 1 month – apricot, fig, papaya, pineapple, strawberry

11 CA or MA may be applied to improve the storage potential of either short- or long- lasting commodities.

12 Use of CA for short-term storage

13 Transportation of strawberries in CO 2 – enriched atmosphere – TransFresh (Tectroll) technology

14 Use of CA for long-term storage

15 CA recommendations A CD-ROM entitled: “CA Recommendations (2001)” was published by the University of California, Postharvest Technology Center. The CD-ROM can be ordered through website access at

16 The above recent publication from the 8 th Int. CA Conference (2002) provides a list of the optimal CA conditions for 35 selected horticultural commodities. Acta Hortic. (2003) 600:

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19 Recent developments in CA storage:  Recent improvements include maintaining CA during transport in refrigerated marine containers - this allows to continue the CA chain of apple, pear and kiwi during transport.  CA transport of banana permits the harvest at a more fully-mature stage.  CA transport of avocado permits to use a lower temperature of 5  C without the development of CI.

20 In addition to CA, there is also a continuing increase in the use of plastic films and MAP. The greatest use of MAP is for fresh-cut products (to maintain 2-5% O 2 and 8-12% CO 2 ). It is possible to improve gas control in MAP by adding absorbers of ethylene, carbon dioxide and oxygen.

21 Use of MAP for fresh-cut produce

22 Fresh-cut lettuce in MAP

23 Fresh-cut fruit in MAP

24 The commodity and its environment: Model for gas exchange

25 Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP)

26 Commercial MAP of banana fruit

27 Banana – individual bags

28 Commercial MAP of kiwi

29 Commercial MAP of broccoli

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31 Commercial MAP of apples

32 Commercial MAP of cherries

33 Commercial MAP of grapes

34 Individual seal packaging of oranges China, 2007

35 MAP of mangoes Bangkok, 2007

36 MAP of apples Bangkok, 2007

37 MAP of peppers Bangkok, 2007

38 Pallet of Mango fruit covered with PE

39 Gas permeability of various plastic films

40 Perforated bags Bangkok, 2007

41 In addition to gas exchange properties, new polymeric films have been developed with various water vapor transmission rates, which allow to control the RH inside the package and to avoid problems caused by water condensation.

42 Water condensation inside MAP

43 Effects of different MA films on water condensation

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45 Water condensation and decay development Bangkok, 2007

46 Water condensation in fresh-cut pineapple Thailand, 2011

47 In commercial practice, CA is applied especially in apples and pears, whereas MA is successfully applied in a wide range of produce

48 The following pictures explore some applicable uses of CA and MAP storage:

49 Effects of MAP on the inhibition of ripening in Mango fruit

50 Effects of MAP on the quality of pomegranate fruit

51 Inhibition of senescence and of ethylene effects by CA in parsley

52 Inhibition of senescence by MAP in parsley

53 Inhibition of senescence by MAP in broccoli

54 Inhibition of senescence by MAP in squash

55 Inhibition of leaf senescence by MAP in radish

56 Inhibition of sprouting by MAP in radish

57 Thank you for your attention!


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