Sustainable control of postharvest apple rots – from orchard to store


Abstract: Fungal rots can result in significant losses in storage, particularly in fruit stored beyond January. Successful control of storage rots depends on a clear understanding of the rots to be controlled. Over the past two decades we have carried out surveys to determine the rots present in commercial apple stores in the UK. The survey involves weekly visits to pack houses from January to March. The survey was conducted on fruit that was being graded at the time of the visit. Rots were identified visually and numbers recorded. The resulting data allowed us to observe trends in the rot profile over time. Historical data is also available from rot surveys conducted in the UK during the 1930s, 1960s and 1980s. The combined dataset shows large shifts in the significance of different rot species over time. Information on rot profiles and species level identification of the causative agents add to our current understanding of post-harvest apple rots, how this can be used practically by growers and future areas of research.

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