Journal of Pure and Applied MicrobiologyVol. 9 No. Special Edition May. 2015

Increasing Shelf Life of Pakistani Peaches Using Gamma Irradiation to Overcome Quarantine Barriers in Fruit Exports From Pakistan

Mehwish Iqtedar1*, Uzma Sarwar1, Roheena Abdullah1, Afshan Kaleem1, Mahwish Aftab1, Shagufta Naz2, Fakhar-un Nisa2, Saima Sharif2, Saima Aftab3 and Shagufta Naz1

1Department of Biotechnology, Lahore College for Women University, Lahore, Pakistan. 2Department of Zoology, Lahore College for Women University, Lahore, Pakistan. 3Department of Environmental Science, Lahore College for Women University, Lahore, Pakistan.

Received on 11 April 2015 and accepted on 09 May 2015

 

ABSTRACT

The present study was carried out to determine the effect of gamma irradiation on the microbiological and organoleptic properties of peaches to improve the quality and increase in shelf-life of indigenous fruit variety of Pakistani peaches. The matured peaches (variety no. 4) were collected from local market of Lahore and samples were irradiated with Gamma radiation doses of 0.25, 0.5, and 0.75kGy. Study period comprised of three weeks during which samples were kept at refrigerated temperature (4oC). Microbial evaluation of peaches revealed the presence of diverse aerobic mesophilic bacteria, yeast and molds. The microbial count decreased significantly with increasing dose level. Salmonella sonnie were detected only in control samples. Peaches exposed to 0.75kGy dose showed highest reduction in bacterial count i.e. upto 59.8% on nutrient agar whereas fungal load was reduced up to 77.4% on PDA. Gamma-irradiation dose of 0.75kGy was found to be more effective in reducing microbial load. Sensory evaluation of the fruits revealed that gamma irradiation preserved the texture and appearance of fruit and also delayed the fruit decay by 7 days. Hence, gamma irradiations can be used as an effective treatment for improving the fruit quality and increasing marketable shelf life of peaches.

Keywords : Gamma irradiation, microbial load on Peaches, Quarantine barriers, food borne pathogens on peaches.