SMP24019 Assessing the harvest quality of organic bananas (BO-69-002-077)

Project: LNV project

Project Details


Peru is a major fruit exporter, including banana as one of the many fruits exported. In the global trade banana is by far the most traded fruit, with around 20 million tonnes per year the fruit accounts for ± 25% of the seaborne refrigerated freight. One factor leading to food loss is the uncertainty in post-harvest decay rates: not each harvested fruit is equally strong, but often the available batch-specific information is very limited. Banana is no exception in this. Peruvian bananas are mostly organic bananas, making their post-harvest quality decay rates extra uncertain.

If at the time of harvest more accurate information is available about post-harvest quality-decay characteristics of specific batches, then it may become possible to predict quality after transport/storage more accurately, and hence the harvest planning and the quality-controlled logistics can be optimized. Two key decisions which may be optimized when the harvest quality is better known:

1.     When to harvest which batch of fruit?

2.     Which fruit should be sent to which destination?

Right now we know that weather conditions and fertilizer dosage are candidate (indirect) predictors. We prefer more direct predictors by measurement of fruit properties. In this SMP project the aim is to build hypotheses for how to measure/estimate the harvest quality of organic bananas from Peru. Next to this we want to build a larger consortium that wants to work on developing methods which can serve as initial states in postharvest (banana) fruit quality prediction models. This will be focused around most pressing quality concerns, such as crown rot in banana. Improved predictions will contribute to increased pack out rates.

Effective start/end date1/01/2431/12/24