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Pilirani Pankomera

Doctor of Philosophy, (Food Technology)
Study Completed: 2015
College of Health


Thesis Title
Effects of postharvest treatments on sweetpotato (Ipomoea batatas) storage quality

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Long-term sweetpotato storage is a challenge in less developed countries where controlled temperature methods are difficult to achieve. Most farmers have limited access to electric power. Ms Pankomera examined possible postharvest treatments for extending the sweetpotato storage life under non-refrigerated conditions without compromising sweetpotato nutritional benefits. From the selected postharvest treatments (that is, hot water treatment, edible coating, ethylene and 1-methylcyclopropene), Ms Pankomera found that the combined use of hot water treatments and edible coatings could be an attractive solution to extending the storage life of non-refrigerated sweetpotato. Her findings also confirmed that ethylene suppressed sweetpotato sprout elongation during storage, but also caused root splitting. Future research would be needed to find ways to get the benefit of ethylene for sweetpotato sprout reduction without incurring the risk of root splitting. 

Professor Julian Heyes
Dr Steve Lewthwaite
Professor Nick Roskruge