QUALITY INDEX AND HARVEST MATURITY OF Eugenia cibrata FRUITS
ABSTRACT The aim of this study was to characterize and determine the quality index and the harvest maturity of Eugenia cibrata fruits. Fruits were harvested at 39, 41 and 43 days after sprouting and selected by the larger size. Fruits ripened on the plant until complete abscissions were considered standard for determining the quality index after harvest. Samples were analyzed at harvest day and at two days of storage at temperature of 26 ± 2 ° C and relative humidity of 85-90%. The following items were evaluated: firmness, number of seeds, longitudinal and transversal diameter, shape index, weight of seeds, pulp and fruit, titratable acidity (TA ), soluble solids (SS), ascorbic acid, TA / SS ratio and pulp yield. The experimental design was completely randomized in a split plot scheme in time, with additional treatment. E. cibrata fruit is a round berry with 0.98 shape index; mass of 24.28 g, green epicarp and white endocarp. The maturity stage identified as ideal for harvest occurred from 43 days after flower opening (anthesis). Fruits selected among those with larger sizes also reached physiological maturity and quality similar to those ripened on the plant. The quality index of E. cibrata is pH 2.88; soluble solids of 3.7%; titratable acidity of 3.38% in citric acid; ascorbic acid of 77.05 mg 100g-1, TA / SS ratio of 1.09 and pulp yield of 72.01%.