The role of post-harvest
management in
assuring the quality
and safety of
horticultural produce

Adel A. Kader
Department of Pomology
University of California
Davis, United States of America
Rosa S. Rolle
Agricultural and Food Engineering
Technologies Service
FAO Agricultural Support Systems Division
Rome, 2004

Table of Contents

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ISBN 92-5-105137-2
ISSN 1010-1365

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© FAO 2003

Table of Contents


1. Introduction

1.1 Value of horticultural perishables and their post-harvest losses
1.2 Quality factors
1.3 Safety factors

2. Genetic, Pre-harvest, and Harvesting Factors that Influence the Quality and Safety of Horticultural Crops

2.1 Genetic factors
2.2 Climatic conditions
2.3 Cultural practices
2.4 Maturity at harvest in relation to quality
2.5 Method of harvesting in relation to physical damage and uniformity of maturity

3. Post-harvest Management Procedures that are Critical to Maintaining the Quality and Safety of Horticultural Crops

3.1 Packing and packaging of fruits and vegetables
3.2 Temperature and relative humidity management
3.3 Cooling methods
3.4 Refrigerated transport and storage
3.5 The cold chain and its importance
3.6 Return on investment in temperature and relative humidity management

4. Post-harvest Treatments Designed to Minimize Produce Contamination and to Maximize Quality

4.1 Treatments to reduce microbial contamination
4.2 Treatments to minimize water loss
4.3 Treatments to reduce ethylene damage
4.4 Treatments for decay control
4.5 Treatments for insect control

5. Post-harvest Treatments Designed to Manipulate the Environment around Produce in Order to Enhance Quality

5.1 Modified atmosphere storage
5.2 Ethylene exclusion and removal
5.3 Return on investment in reducing ethylene damage
5.4 Treatments to enhance uniformity in fruit ripening

6. Criteria for the Selection of Appropriate Post-harvest Technologies

7. References

8. Internet Resources

FAO Technical Papers

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