Predictive Modeling of Pecan Quality during Commercial Storage and Distribution

Summary

Georgia is the nation's largest pecan producing state. After harvest, pecans are subjected to various storage conditions during transportation, storage and distribution.

Situation

Pecan quality can deteriorate during storage leading to reduced shelf life. Especially, large amounts of GA grown pecans are exported to other countries in which pecans may encounter adverse storage conditions, and the quality can deteriorate significantly during long-time

Response

Our research is systematically investigating pecan quality changes at various storage conditions. The storage conditions investigated cover a wide range of conditions (temperature: 4-45 ˚C, relative humidity: 30-90%, storage duration up to 1.5 years) that may occur during commercial storage and retail. The changes in pecan moisture, texture degradation and lipid oxidation are assessed. Sensory properties are evaluated to determine the flavor changes and the shelf life of the samples. The effect of different packaging materials and modified air conditions are also examined for their effect on pecan shelf life. The storability of different pecan cultivars (Pawnee, Desirable, Stuart) and the effect of different conditioning methods are also studied.

Impact

We are also developing a predictive computational model that can be used to predict pecan quality after storage at various conditions. The model will be uploaded to the UGA website for free use to pecan growers and processors.

State Issue

Food Safety and Quality

Details

  • Year: 2020
  • Geographic Scope: State
  • County: Clarke
  • Location: College Station, Athens
  • Program Areas:
    • Agriculture & Natural Resources

Author

    Kong, Fanbin
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Research Impact