Fruit grading

The fruit to be packed needs to be mature, firm, well formed, free of defects, with flat eyes and a minimum TSS of 12% in Hawaii (Anon., 1968). Fruit are graded based upon recognized appearance characteristics: degree of skin coloration, size (weight), absence of defects and diseases and other market needs before packing (Table 10.1). Crown size is a crucial grade component (Plate 37), with a minimum size and a ratio of crown to fruit length of 0.33-1.5 for the higher grades. Crowns developed during the summer in Hawaii tend to be larger and may require gouging at harvest to meet the standard. This gouging leaves a wound for possible pathogen entry and degrades overall appearance. Gouging 2 months before harvest, avoiding visible scarring, is also practised to limit crown growth (Soler, 1992a).

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