Fresh fruits and vegetables are living tissues, although they are no longer attached to the plant. They breathe, just as humans do, and their composition and physiology continue to change after harvest. They continue to ripen and, finally, they begin to die. Cellular breakdown and death are inevitable, but can be slowed with optimal storage conditions. Fresh fruits and vegetables need low temperatures (0 C to 1.5C) and high relative humidity (80 to 95 percent) to lower respiration and to slow metabolic and transpiration rates. By slowing these processes, water loss is reduced and food value, quality and energy reserves are maintained.
Over the years TopFresh experts have gained accumulated experience to deal and advice its customers with the appropriate way to handle fresh fruits & vegetables
- Harvest during the coolest part of the day
- After harvesting, protect the crop from direct sunlight.
- Use light colored crates
- Place crates in shaded areas in the field until transport to packing house (small temporary or movable shacks can be constructed)
- Sprinkle potable water over the produce (for selected produce types)
- Make frequent trips to the packing house
- Use covered trucks for transport from field to packing house
- Begin pre-cooling as soon as produce arrives at packing house (unless packing is done in an ambient temperature room)
- Use humidifiers to reduce dehydration of naked produce during cooling and storage
If using hydro cooling please note
- Disinfect the water
- Closely monitor pH, chlorine and temperature
- Change water frequently or filter if it is re-circulated
For detailed, best cooling practices contact us at email@example.com