Effect of five different stages of ripening on chemical compounds in medlar (Mespilus germanica L.)

Study of changes of nutritional value of fruit during the process of ripening can help to estimate the optimal date for fruit harvesting to achieve the best quality for direct consumption and further utilization. The aim of this study was to monitor changes of chemical composition of medlar fruit (Mespilus germanica L.) depending on the five various ripening stages including 134, 144, 154, 164 and 174 days after full bloom (DAFB). Fruits were analyzed and ascorbic acid (AA) and total phenolic compounds content with respect to the total antioxidant activity were determined. In addition, selected micronutrients and macronutrients were monitored. Results of our experiment demonstrate that ascorbic acid, total phenolics compounds content and total antioxidant activity significantly decreased with the increasing time of ripeness. Decreasing tendency in potassium, calcium and magnesium contents during ripening stages was also determined. During the ripening period, content of all micronutrients as well as phosphorus and sodium was balanced with no statistically significant differences between monitored ripening stages that can be considered as a positive fact with respect to ideal consumption quality of fruit.
MOLECULES. 2010, vol. 16, issue 1, p. 74-91.
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