Influence of organic beeswax-based coating emulsion on the post-storage quality of sweet pepper, mango, and avocado fruit

A. Bustan, J. Lahav

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Sweet pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) is extremely sensitive to water loss; firmness is lost after 4-6% of weight reduction. 'Ready-to-eat' mango (Mangifera indica) and avocado (Persea americana) fruit tend to soften and suffer from pathogens. Appropriate postharvest conditions ensure high produce quality during transportation period. Nevertheless, produce quality declines within few days later, often before arrival to final consumers. Waxes have been developed for postharvest treatment of many fruit and vegetable species, but markets tend to reject synthetic coatings. Furthermore, excluding the shiny appearance provided by most waxes, their high viscosity might block gas exchange levels required for normal ripening processes, and interior quality could decline. Here we report the application of a novel formulation of natural beeswax emulsion to sweet pepper, mango, and avocado fruit at a commercial level. The application is integrated into working postharvest procedures with minimum modification of the apparatus involved. In sweet pepper, the shelf-life after 21 d of cold-storage was extended from 3 to 6 days, maintaining 70% of the fruit at marketable firmness levels, comparing to 30% of control fruit. In mango, softening during shelf-life (after 11d in cold storage) was delayed by 1 day ('Maya') and 5 days ('Shelly'), TSS did not differ significantly, the levels of organic acids remained higher, and the frequency of interior collapse was much lower compared to commerciallytreated or control fruit. In avocado ('Ettinger') fruit after 14 d of cold storage, the beeswax emulsion improved the peel resistance to penetration and fruit sensory firmness, and significantly reduced decay. Beyond partial sealing of the fruit surface, the involvement of the beeswax emulsion in structural and biochemical processes in the peel of ripening fruit is currently being researched.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationXXVIII International Horticultural Congress on Science and Horticulture for People (IHC2010)
Subtitle of host publicationInternational Symposium on Postharvest Technology in the Global Market
PublisherInternational Society for Horticultural Science
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9789066053786
StatePublished - 30 Jun 2012
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameActa Horticulturae
ISSN (Print)0567-7572


  • Capsicum annuum
  • Edible coating
  • Firmness
  • Mangifera indica
  • Persea Americana
  • Shelf life
  • Weight loss

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Horticulture


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