Natural product research

Evaluation of essential oils for maintaining postharvest quality of Thompson seedless table grape.

PMID 21999332


The effects of postharvest spraying of essential oils from sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum), fennel (Foeniculum vulgare), summer savory (Satureja hortensis) and thyme (Thymus vulgaris) on fungal decay and quality parameters of the 'Thompson seedless' table grape stored at 0 ± 1°C for 60 days were evaluated. Results showed that the essential oils, especially of thyme and fennel, have a good inhibitory effect on the development of fungal decay in Thompson table grapes. In addition, essential oils reduced weight loss, berry and rachis browning and had no considerable adverse effect on the flavour of the fruits. GC-MS analysis showed that the main compounds identified in sweet basil, fennel, summer savory and thyme oils are linalool (65.25%), trans-anethole (64.72%), carvacrol (54.14%) and β-ocimene (12.62%), respectively. Therefore, these essential oils have good potential for use as an alternative to synthetic fungicides for the preservation and storage of table grapes.