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The flavor of pomegranate fruit: a review

Authors

  • Lina Mayuoni-Kirshinbaum,

    1. Department of Postharvest Science of Fresh Produce, ARO, The Volcani Center, Bet Dagan, Israel
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    • Currently a PhD student at the Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Quality Sciences of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
  • Ron Porat

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Postharvest Science of Fresh Produce, ARO, The Volcani Center, Bet Dagan, Israel
    • Correspondence to: Ron Porat, Department of Postharvest Science of Fresh Produce, ARO, The Volcani Center, PO Box 6, Bet Dagan 50250, Israel. E-mail: rporat@volcani.agri.gov.il

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Abstract

Despite the increasing commercial importance of pomegranate, especially because of its recently discovered health-promoting benefits, relatively little is yet known regarding its sensory quality and flavor preferences, or about the biochemical constituents that determine its sensory characteristics. The perceived flavor of pomegranate fruit results from the combination of various taste, aroma and mouthfeel sensations. The taste is governed mainly by the presence of sugars (glucose and fructose) and organic acids (primarily citric and malic acids). The aroma evolves from the presence of dozens of volatiles, including alcohols, aldehydes, ketones, and terpenes, which provide a mixture of various ‘green’, ‘woody’, ‘earthy’, ‘fruity’, ‘floral’, ‘sweet’ and ‘musty’ notes. In addition, the sensory satisfaction during the eating of pomegranate arils is complemented by various mouthfeel sensations, including seed hardness and astringency sensations. In the present review we will describe the sensory quality and flavor preferences of pomegranate fruit, including the genetic diversity in flavor characteristics among distinct varieties. In addition, we will describe the dynamic changes that occur in fruit flavor during fruit ripening and postharvest storage. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry

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