The effect of cold chain on mushroom quality. Dr John Collier Monaghan Mushrooms

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1 The effect of cold chain on mushroom quality Dr John Collier Monaghan Mushrooms

2 Introduction Characteristics of mushrooms Importance of cold chain Typical cold chain scenarios What is the best scenario Effect of cold chain on sales Technologies that can be used Conclusions

3 Characteristics of Fungi What are the characteristics of mushrooms that make them stand out from fruit or vegetables? Respiration Enzymatic browning Weight Loss Bacterial Populations

4 Respiration What is respiration? Respiration is how we breathe. We take in 0 2 and release C0 2. Mushrooms are still living so they are still respiring! O 2 CO2

5 Produce Mushrooms 1375 Banana 200 Asparagus 480 Kidney beans 250 Apple 35 Green Peas 275 Respiration Rate (ml CO 2 /Kg/Day)

6 Enzymatic browning Caused by an enzyme called Polyphenol Oxidase (PPO) or tyrosinases There are no cell walls so hyphae can be damaged releasing these enzymes out. Binds with proteins causing the formation of brown coloured complexes Mushrooms have extremely high levels of these enzymes and are used for the commercial production of this enzyme.

7 Weight Loss Mushrooms lose weight quickly because they have no epidermis to protect them. This needs to be controlled More than 10% weight loss is seen in the form of shrivelling Other veg can lose up to 20% without it having a visual effect Excess water in the pack can lead to the growth of pathogenic bacteria

8 Microbial decay Mushrooms have a vast array of microbes Cause the rapid decay of the mushrooms Natural process for the recycling of carbon from fruiting bodies.

9 Importance of cold chain Cold chain is important to stop all the processes and enhance the shelf-life of a perishable product!

10 What is a typical Cold Chain Scenario?

11 What is best for the mushroom? Get mushrooms into refrigeration as quickly as possible For every ½ hr not refrigerated 4 hrs is lost in shelf-life Try and get the temperature down in refrigeration Monitoring wind chill Maintain the temperature below 4-8 o C throughout shelf-life Spikes in temperature cause the problems

12 How does cold chain affect sales? Prior To In-store Test Post-Implementation 28% 33% Where perfect cold chain conditions were kept there was a significant increase in good impressions Impacts my impression extremely Keeping cold chain at ideal situations led to an increase in unit sales of 18% and a reduction in shrink of 2%. 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% -5% -10% -15% Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9 Week 10 Week 11 Week 12 Test minus Control Store Percent Difference Units Sold Linear (Units Sold) Incremental Shrink Linear (Incremental Shrink)

13 Cooling Technologies Forced air cooling Pressure differential from one side of the stack to the other Forcing air over the product and hence it is cooled Used for a wide range of produce including delicate produce No commercial units using this with mushrooms but research is promising Vacuum cooling Increasing pressure to reduce the boiling point of water Used extensively in Europe, USA, Australia Proven applicable with mushrooms Cryogenic Cooling Using CO 2 or liquid nitrogen with a freezing point of -78 C or -196 Fine balance between freezing and cooling Development phase but showing promise

14 Comparison between technologies Forced Air Cooling Vacuum Cooling Cryogenic Cooling Cost: Installation Running Proven Yes Yes No Advantages Fast (1hr) Low running costs Fast (20 min) Fast (mins) Disadvantages No weight loss 5% weight loss High running costs Unknown May cause freezer burn

15 Conclusion Mushroom have characteristics that make it important to have good cold chain. These include high respiration, browning and weight loss. The ideal cold chain scenario is to keep temp as stable as possible and as low as possible. There are a number of new technologies to chill down mushrooms quickly. These need to be assessed.

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