3 years ago

Combined Effects of Irrigation Regime, Genotype, and Harvest Stage Determine Tomato Fruit Quality and Aptitude for Processing into Puree.

David Page, Anne-Laure Fanciullino, Alexandre Arbex de Castro Vilas Boas, Nadia Bertin, Robert Giovinazzo
Industry tomatoes are produced under a range of climatic conditions and practices which significantly impact on main quality traits of harvested fruits. However, the quality of tomato intended for processing is currently addressed on delivery through color and Brix only, whereas other traits are overlooked. Very few works provided an integrated view of the management of tomato puree quality throughout the chain. To gain insights into pre- and post-harvest interactions, four genotypes, two water regimes, three maturity stages, and two processes were investigated. Field and glasshouse experiments were conducted near Avignon, France, from May to August 2016. Two irrigation regimes were applied: control plants were irrigated in order to match 100% of evapotranspiration (ETP); water deficit (WD) plants were irrigated as control plants until anthesis of the first flowers, then irrigation was reduced to 60 and 50% ETP in field, and glasshouse respectively. Fruits were collected at three stages during ripening. Their color, fresh weight, dry matter content, and metabolite contents were determined before processing. Pericarp cell size was evaluated in glasshouse only. Two laboratory-scaled processing methods were applied before structural and biochemical analyses of the purees. Results outlined interactive effects between crop and process management. WD hardly reduced yield, but increased dry matter content in the field, in contrast to the glasshouse. The puree viscosity strongly depended on the genotype and the maturity stage, but it was disconnected from fruit dry matter content or Brix. The process impact on puree viscosity strongly depended on water supply during fruit production. Moreover, the lycopene content of fresh fruit may influence puree viscosity. This work opens new perspectives for managing puree quality in the field showing that it was possible to reduce water supply without affecting yield and to improve puree quality.

Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2017.01725

DOI: 10.3389/fpls.2017.01725

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