CONCENTROL wanted to evaluate the effects of treating post-harvest cherries with our CONCERVOL NATURE-2 coating agent through several studies and assessments, in comparison with the results obtained in untreated cherries. These analyses were performed in our lab, as well as in external labs by specialized distributors (in Spain and Portugal) where we were able to confirm the impact of the treatment on cherries harvested at commercial ripeness.

For this purpose, cherries were stored in refrigerated environments at 5ºC for up to 22 days. The evaluated characteristics were: weight (loss by dehydration), natural appearance of the fruit, as well as the status of the pedicels. The final results showed that, cherries that were treated with CONCERVOL NATURE-2 had ripened at a slower rate than those untreated. This could be observed in the color of both the fruit and the pedicels as well as by the appearance of less rot and less weight loss. In conclusion, we can determine that CONCERVOL NATURE-2 extends the shelf life of post-harvest cherries.

Fruits and vegetables are sensitive and fragile products that can suffer damage due to climatic incidents, as well as during handling and transportation, before reaching the consumer. Moreover, they are highly perishable due to the natural ripening process. This process supposes a race against the clock all across the product value chain: producers and traders of fruits and vegetables face the challenge of extending the shelf life of the product in order for it to arrive to consumers in the best conditions.

For this reason, CONCENTROL has developed the CONCERVOL range: a series of products that aim to protect fruit post-harvest, slowing down the ripening process. NATURE CONCERVOL-2 is a coating agent for fruits, based on sucroesters (food additive E-473). When applying it to the surface of the fruit, it creates a semipermeable gas barrier reducing respiration rates, helping to maintain the color, smell and appearance of the fruit. It also reduces transpiration and prevents weight losscaused by dehydration.

The dose to be applied depends on the type of fruit (including local varieties), the level of ripening and other environmental factors. The product should always be applied diluted in water and by immersion or drenching. Beyond the aforementioned benefits, CONCERVOL NATURE-2 provides excellent wetting on treated fruits and creates an edible protective film that does not change the organoleptic or mechanical properties of the fruit, helping it keep its structural integrity. Unlike other alternative treatments, CONCERVOL NATURE-2 when diluted in water presents excellent wetting, is completely transparent and shows no phase separation.

To test the effect of CONCERVOL NATURE-2 in the conservation of weight, a test with cherries was carried out in the lab of a Portuguese distributor. There, two sets of cherries were left to ripen for 22 days in a refrigerated environment at 5ºC: a sample of cherries treated with CONCERVOL NATURE -2 and another sample that was left untreated.

As the chart shows, the effects of the coating agent can be appreciated at first glance after the 7th day of the study, but especially after 22 days, when the difference between the weight of the sample treated with CONCERVOL NATURE-2 and the untreated sample exceeds 100g (10% of its initial weight).

We also studied the effect of CONCERVOL in the preservation of color, smell and, in general, the natural appearance of cherries. To do so, on day 1, a manually selected group of cherries were washed and disinfected by immersion during 10 minutes in chlorinated water with 2.0 ppm chlorine. Then, they were divided into two sets: the first was treated with a 2% aqueous solution of CONCERVOL NATURE-2, while the second received no treatment. Both groups were stored in silicone trays (300g cherries per tray), wrapped in perforated bags (non-protected atmosphere) and stored in refrigerated chambers at 5°C without humidity control.

During the test, the quality of cherries was evaluated through ripening, visual appearance and the effect of rot on the fruit. The samples were tested on the 4th, 7th, 10th, 15th and 20th day. After 20 days of storage at 5°C, we observed that, the sample of cherries treated with CONCERVOL NATURE-2 presented a lower degree of ripening, showing less darkening of the cherries and less rot.

A third analysis by a distributor in Spain, analyzed the effect of CONCERVOL NATURE-2 on the conservation of the natural aspect of the pedicels, a key feature of cherries’ attractiveness for consumers. After being treated with a 2% solution by immersion, a clear effect of our agent was observed at 20 days, with treated cherries maintaining the original green color of the pedicel, contrary to those untreated, that showed a darker tone.

In conclusion, we can affirm that treatment with CONCERVOL NATURE-2 post-harvest coating agent extends the shelf life of cherries. we can also confirm that CONCERVOL NATURE-2 retains more water and weight on treated cherries, compared to those that have not ben treated. Furthermore, it has a significant effects on the natural appearance of cherries, with less darkening of the pedicel and a slower rate of ripening, to the point of assuring less rot in comparison to untreated cherries.