Home About Browse Search

Bioactive compounds in baby spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.)

effects of pre- and postharvest factors

Bergquist, Sara (2006). Bioactive compounds in baby spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.). Diss. (sammanfattning/summary) Alnarp : Sveriges lantbruksuniv., Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae, 1652-6880 ; 2006:62
ISBN 91-576-7111-7
[Doctoral thesis]

[img] PDF


A high intake of fruit and vegetables is well known to have positive effects on human health, and has been correlated to a decreased risk of most degenerative diseases of ageing, such as cardiovascular disease, cataracts and several forms of cancer. These protective effects have been attributed to high concentrations of bioactive compounds (ascorbic acid, flavonoids, carotenoids) in fruit and vegetables, partly due to the antioxidative action of some of these compounds. Maintaining a high level of these compounds in fruit and vegetables is therefore desirable. In addition, a high concentration of antioxidants in horticultural produce is believed to improve its storability and reduce the rate of deterioration. This thesis investigated the effects of pre- and postharvest factors on the concentrations of bioactive compounds in baby spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.). The factors studied included sowing time, growth stage at harvest, use of shade nettings and postharvest storage temperature and duration. Bioactive compounds were analysed using reversed-phase HPLC and chlorophylls using a spectrophotometric method. Visual quality of the fresh and stored leaves was scored on a 1-9 scale, where 9 was the best. The concentrations of ascorbic acid and flavonoids most often decreased during plant growth. Carotenoids showed relatively small increases or decreases, but nevertheless, plant growth had the largest impact on carotenoid concentration of the factors studied. Harvesting the leaves slightly earlier than is currently common practice may thus give increased concentrations of bioactive compounds. The variation in these compounds during the season was relatively small except for the flavonoids, which doubled in concentration in April-sown spinach compared to August-sown. Shading generally decreased ascorbic acid and total vitamin C concentrations, but most often increased carotenoid concentration. Flavonoid concentration showed different responses at different times of the season and at different growth stages. In some cases the concentration decreased due to shading, while in others it did not change significantly. There were considerable losses of ascorbic acid during storage, whereas carotenoids and flavonoids were more stable and sometimes increased. Ascorbic acid concentration at harvest was correlated with visual quality after storage, indicating that the antioxidative action of ascorbic acid may protect the plant tissue against oxidative stress and subsequent deterioration.

Authors/Creators:Bergquist, Sara
Title:Bioactive compounds in baby spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.)
Subtitle:effects of pre- and postharvest factors
Series Name/Journal:Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae
Year of publishing :2006
Number of Pages:40
ALLI. Bergquist, S. Å. M., Gertsson, U. E. & Olsson, M. E. 2006. Influence of growth stage and postharvest storage in ascorbic acid and carotenoid content and visual quality of baby spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.). Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 86; 346-355. II. Bergquist, S. Å. M., Gertsson, U. E., Knuthsen, P. & Olsson, M. E. 2005. Flavonoids in baby spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.): changes during plant growth and storage. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 53; 9459-9464. III. Bergquist, S. Å. M., Gertsson, U. E., Nordmark, L. Y. G. & Olsson, M. E. Bioactive compounds and visual quality of baby spinach as affected by shade netting and postharvest storage. Submitted. IV. Bergquist, S. Å. M., Gertsson, U. E., Nordmark, L. Y. G. & Olsson, M. E. Effect of shade netting on baby spinach flavonoids. Submitted.
Place of Publication:Alnarp
ISBN for printed version:91-576-7111-7
Publication Type:Doctoral thesis
Full Text Status:Public
Agrovoc terms:spinacia oleracea, ascorbic acid, carotenoids, flavonoids, antioxidants, developmental stages, keeping quality
Keywords:ascorbic acid, vitamin C, carotenoids, flavonoids, antioxidants, growth stage, time of season, shade netting, postharvest storage
Permanent URL:
ID Code:1218
Department:?? 4806 ??
Deposited By: Sara Bergquist
Deposited On:29 Sep 2006 00:00
Metadata Last Modified:02 Dec 2014 10:10

Repository Staff Only: item control page


Downloads per year (since September 2012)

View more statistics