Physiological, physical and biochemical changes associated with ripening and shelf life extension of Red Lady papaya as influenced by post harvest treatments

M. Menaka, P.R. Geetha Lekshmi


Papaya is one of the important fruit crops grown commercially in India and area under the cultivar Red lady is expanding due to its consumer acceptance. Papaya is a climacteric fruit, and changes associated with ripening occur faster, leading to high perishability and short shelf life. In the present study, different post harvest treatments were evaluated for the shelf life extension of papaya cv. Red Lady so that fruits can be marketed with good quality and reduce post harvest loss. The harvested Red lady papaya fruits of optimum maturity (colour break stage) after sanitisation (ozonation 2 ppm) followed by hot water treatment (500 C for 20 minutes) were subjected to various postharvest treatments, viz., Naphthalene acetic acid (250 ppm), Edible coating (Papaya leaf extract + Aloe gel 1:1), Gibberellic Acid (100 ppm), Calcium chloride (2%) and Salicylic Acid (2 mM). The treated fruits were stored in Corrugated fibre board boxes with 5% ventilation at room temperature and were analysed for physiological, physical, and biochemical parameters periodically till the end of shelf life. Among the treatments, Salicylic acid (2 mM) application of papaya effectively reduced the respiration rate (94.83 mL CO2 kg-1 h-1), physiological loss in weight (13.10%), titratable acidity and recorded the highest values for total soluble solids (11.52 %), sugars, and carotenoid content (2.55 mg 100g-1) at the end of shelf life. The study revealed that post harvest treatment of Red Lady papaya with 2 mM Salicylic acid delayed the ripening and extended the shelf life upto14.56 days at room temperature storage, with minimum nutritional loss.


Edible coating, Delayed ripening, Papaya, Postharvest treatments, Salicylic Acid, Shelf life

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