Firmness and stability of plantain fruits under ambient
 
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Department of Agricultural Engineering, Federal University of Technology, P.M.B. 1526, Owerri, Imo State, Nigeria
 
Int. Agrophys. 1996, 10(1): 37–41
 
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ABSTRACT
Plantain (Musa spp) fruit physical properties of finger diameter, pulp/peel ratio, fruit water content and firmness were measured using standard procedures. Fruits with high firmness had low water content, reduced pulp/peel ratio, small finger diameter, and high fruit weight. It was observed that if 50 % of the fingers in the bunch have a firmness between 45-55 N for a finger diameter above 40 mm, the plantain fruits may be said to have matured for harvest. In 15-d storage at ambient temperature (21-24 °C) fruit firmness and water content decreased from 56.1 to 30.6 N and from 66.8 to 45.3 %, respectively, while fruit weight loss and pulp/peel ratio increased from 0 to 7.66 % and from 1.59 to 2.35 %, respectively. Firmness was used to classify plantain fruits into 4soft' (55 N) and 'firm' (40-55 N). The fruit can store for 6-d under ambient conditions and still remain 'firm'. After 6-d storage, the fruit ripens and become soft.
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