Quality of postharvest strawberries: comparative effect of fungal chitosan gel, nanoparticles and gel enriched with edible nanoparticles coatings

Natália Ferrão Castelo Branco Melo, Maria Manuela Estevez Pintado, José Alberto da Costa Medeiros, André Galembeck, Margarida Angélica da Silva Vasconcelos, Viviane Lansky Xavier, Marcos Antônio Barbosa de Lima, Tânia Lucia Montenegro Stamford, Thatiana Montenegro Stamford–Arnaud, Miguel Angel Pelágio Flores, Thayza Christina Montenegro Stamford


This study compared, for the first time, the postharvest conservative action of edible fungal chitosan coatings (gel, nanoparticles and gel-nanoparticle) on the physico-chemical, sensorial and microbiological characteristics of strawberries. The nanoparticles were prepared by an ionic gelation method and characterized by dynamic light scattering and scanning electron microscopy. The antioxidant (DPPH* and ABTS*) activity of the edible coatings and the antimicrobial (macrodilution method) action against phytopathogenic fungi were verified. The nanoparticles had a size of 331.1 nm and a zeta potential of+ 34 mV. The gel, nanoparticles and gel+nanoparticles exhibited minimum inhibitory concentration values ranging from 4 to 5, 1.5 to 2.5 and 1.0 + 0.5 to 2.0 + 1.5 g.L-1, respectively. All the edible coatings exhibited antifungal action. All the coatings had high scavenging activity, especially the gel edible coating. The coatings, especially the gel+nanoparticles, decreased the weight loss, microbiological growth, soluble solids, maturity index and moisture loss of the strawberry and preserved the pH values, anthocyanin content, titratable acidity and sensory characteristics. Therefore, the use of chitosan edible coating containing nanoparticles can be a promising strategy to improve the post-harvest quality of strawberries.


Antifungal activity; antioxidant activity; biopolymer; nanotechnology; shelf-life

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