Quality parameters and antioxidant properties in organic and conventionally grown broccoli after pre-storage hot water treatment

Authors

  • Pedro Javier Zapata,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Food Technology, EPSO, University Miguel Hernández, Ctra. Beniel km. 3.2, 03312, Orihuela, Alicante, Spain
      Pedro Javier Zapata, Department of Food Technology, EPSO, University Miguel Hernández, Ctra. Beniel km. 3.2, 03312, Orihuela, Alicante, Spain. E-mail: pedrojzapata@umh.es
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Gregory A Tucker,

    1. Division of Nutritional Sciences, School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington Campus, Loughborough, Leics LE12 5RD, UK
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Daniel Valero,

    1. Department of Food Technology, EPSO, University Miguel Hernández, Ctra. Beniel km. 3.2, 03312, Orihuela, Alicante, Spain
    Search for more papers by this author
  • María Serrano

    1. Department of Applied Biology, EPSO, University Miguel Hernández, Ctra. Beniel km. 3.2, 03312, Orihuela, Alicante, Spain
    Search for more papers by this author

Pedro Javier Zapata, Department of Food Technology, EPSO, University Miguel Hernández, Ctra. Beniel km. 3.2, 03312, Orihuela, Alicante, Spain. E-mail: pedrojzapata@umh.es

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Demand for broccoli has increased due to its high content of bioactive compounds. However, broccoli is a perishable commodity with a short shelf life mainly due to dehydration, yellowing and losses of bioactive compounds. Thus, efficient treatments to preserve broccoli quality are needed.

RESULTS: The effect of heat treatment on senescence and antioxidant compounds evolution during storage at 20 °C was evaluated in organic and conventionally grown broccoli. Senescence evolved quickly as manifested by floral head yellowing, which was higher in conventional than in organic broccolis, but senescence was significantly delayed by heat treatment. All organic acids, including ascorbic acid, were found at higher concentrations in organic than in conventional broccoli at harvest but decreased during storage in all broccolis. Phenolic concentration and antioxidant activity (in both hydrophilic and lipophilic fractions) also decreased during storage, although these decreases were higher in conventional than in organic broccolis, and no differences were found attributable to heat treatment.

CONCLUSIONS: Heat treatment was effective in delaying broccoli senescence, manifested by chlorophyll retention. In addition, organic broccoli maintained higher concentrations of bioactive compounds (ascorbic acid and phenolics) and antioxidant potential during storage than conventional broccoli, with higher potential health beneficial effects. © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry

Ancillary