The grape is a non-climacteric fruit which is highly sensitive to fungal infections, especially Botrytis cinerea.
The most common treatment currently available to prevent these infections and maintain fruit quality is to fumigate with SO2 and use metabisulphite. Whilst these treatments are effective, they present a number of inconveniences:
- Development of stains and decolouring of fruit.
- Increase in the corrosion of transportation containers.
- Possible toxicity for humans
- It is prohibited in ecological grape farming.
The CTIFL (Centre Tecnique Interprofessionel des Fruits et Légumes, France) performed an independent study to evaluate the efficacy of alternatives to the use of SO2 in organic grapes. In this trial, they used ETHYLSTOPPER BiOn R8/VOC ethylene sachets from BIOCONSERVACION and two versions of MAP packs. Both systems were compared with a control product without SO2.
The trial concluded that for 10 weeks’ preservation, the packaging of ecological Chasselas de Moissac grapes in MAP packs with or without CO2 enriched gas, facilitated the good preservation of the leaves and stems and retained good turgidity in the grapes, but that this treatment greatly increased the development of Botrytis following the opening of the films and their placement at ambient temperatures.
Alternatively, the use of ETHYL STOPPER sachets favoured the maintenance of grape quality throughout the trial in leaf and stem freshness, as well as in the firmness and juiciness of the fruit, plus, it also demonstrated a tendency to limit the development of Botrytis (see graph)