The essential oils thymol and carvacrol applied in the packing lines avoid lemon spoilage and maintain quality during storage
S. Castillo, C.O. Pérez-Alfonso, D. Martínez-Romero, F. Guillén, M. Serrano, D. Valero
Dept. of Food Technology, University Miguel Hernández, Ctra. Beniel km. 3.2, 03312 Orihuela, Alicante, Spain.
The objective of this paper was to study the effect of essential oils (EOs) thymol and carvacrol applied in citrus packing lines in combination with commercial wax on microbial spoilage, lemon decay and quality parameters during postharvest storage and compared with control (tap water), wax and wax + imazalil as positive control. Results showed that the treatment with wax + EOs was able to reduce yeast and mould and total aerobe counts on lemon surface and decayed lemons after 8 weeks of storage, the efficacy being similar to that obtained from wax + imazalil treatment. In addition, lemons coated with EOs or imazalil showed similar quality attributes (weight loss, softening and colour) retention compared with control or waxed fruits.