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Quality importance of the air in the postharvest of the avocado

By: Mireya Oidor Pachón

Green Keeper:

Avocado is a climacteric fruit very sensitive to the ethylene (ripe hormone produced naturally by the fruit; it is a gas and it is stored in the post-harvest areas). Exposure to low levels of ethylene during the avocado postharvest life accelerates the riping and cold damage at the usual refrigeration temperatures and increases the susceptibility to decay (terminal rot, anthracnose) [1,2]. It has been reported that the ethylene acts as chemical signal to stimulate the germination of the spores of the fungus Colletotrichum gloesporioides, which causes anthracnose [3].

The simplest way and Price- effective of removing the ethylene during the transportation and distribution from the avocado is by using ethylene absorbent of potassium permanganate. They exist many commercial brands in the market that had being homologated for the ecological agriculture/organic according to the European and American normative (EC 834/2007 y NOP).

It had being demonstrated that the use of a set of controlled atmosphere and ethylene absorbent is the best way to minimize the cold damages and extend the commercial life of the avocado [2,4] without compromising quality. The use of ethylene absorbents don´t harms the final process of riping [2] and contributes to maintain the nutritional quality of the avocado because it delay the oxidative degradation of the polyunsaturated fatty acids [5].

To protect the avocado in a effective way from the ethylene effects it is recommended efficient solutions, as the envelopes and absorbent blankets, able to maintain the ethylene at low levels (<0.1 ppm).

Know more about the avocado market reality, the technologies implemented in the sector and other thematic of great interest for the industry, assist to the IX World Avocado Congress. Get your tickets here:

Asist to the event that brings together to the national leaders of the avocado industry and learn side by side of the experts about the avocado market in a event without cost that it´s going to take place in Pereira. Register here:


[1] Pesis et al (2002). Post Biol Technol 24 (2) 171-181.

[2] Illeperuma et al (2002).

[3] Flaishman et al (1994).Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci USA 91, 6579-6583.

[4] Faubion et al. Proc. Second World Avocado Congress 1992, 467-472.

[5] Plaza et al (2003). Acta Hort 600. ISHS 2003

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