Potential application of pre-harvest LED interlighting to improve tomato quality and storability
Appolloni, Elisa; Pennisi, Giuseppina; Paucek, Ivan; Cellini, Antonio; Crepaldi, Andrea; Spinelli, Francesco; Gianquinto, Giorgio; Gabarrell, Xavier; Orsini, Francesco
ACCESS at Postharvest Biology and Technology (2023), 195: 112113 Growing conditions and agronomical inputs play a key role in determining fruit qualitative and nutraceutical traits at harvest […]
Growing conditions and agronomical inputs play a key role in determining fruit qualitative and nutraceutical traits at harvest and post-harvest. The hereby presented research investigated the effects of pre-harvest supplemental LED interlighting on post-harvest quality of hydroponically grown tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum “Siranzo”). Three LED treatments, applied for 16 h d-1 (h 8.00–00.00), were added to natural sunlight and consisted of Red and Blue (RB), Red and Blue + Far-Red (FR), and Red and Blue + Far-Red at the end-of-day for 30 min (EOD), with an intensity of 180 µmol m-2 s-1 for Red and Blue, plus 44 µmol m-2 s-1 for Far-Red. A control treatment (CK), where plants were grown only with sunlight, was also considered. Fruits at red stage were selected and placed in a storage room at 13 °C in darkness. Fruit quality assessment was performed at harvest time and after one week of storage. RB and FR increased fruit firmness compared to CK, opening possible benefits toward reducing fruit losses during post-harvest handling. RB treated fruits also maintained a higher content of lycopene and β-carotene after the first week of storage. The study demonstrates that supplementary LED interlighting during greenhouse tomato cultivation may enhance storability and help preserve fruit nutritional properties during post-harvest.