Managing the risk of flesh browning for Cripps Pink apples using a climate model (AP08004)
What was it all about?
Flesh browning in Cripps Pink apples can be a major problem for apple producers, causing fruit to be rejected at the wholesale or retail level. Flesh browning only develops in storage so causes are not clear, though there is a correlation between cold growing conditions and increased internal browning.
This project aimed to test and refine these predictions by recording the temperatures experienced by apple trees in different apple growing regions, within orchards and within trees.
Fruit from each tree in the study was harvested, stored in air and then assessed for incidence of flesh browning after eight months of storage.
The overall conclusion from this study was that there is no clear relationship between radial flesh browning and growing temperature. There was a general trend which showed that one type of flesh browning was worse under cooler conditions but researchers concluded that other factors must be at work to account for the variation they found.
These factors could include:
- Climatic factors such as humidity, temperature, and sunlight
- Agronomic factors such as water stress, nutrient availability and soil type
- Other management factors, such as crop load.
The researchers made recommendations for future research to further explore flesh browning.
This project was a strategic levy investment in the Hort Innovation Apple and Pear Fund