Since autumn 2005 treatment of apples with SmartFresh™ (active compound 1-Methylcyclopropene, MCP) is permitted in Switzerland. MCP is an ethylene inhibitor. It binds to the ethylene receptors and prevents ripening processes which are induced by ethylene. Enthusiastic postharvest scientist called it the “magic pullet” and presumed that application of this compound will revolutionize storage technology as did at its time of introduction the CA-storage technology. In most apple cultivars firmness and acidity are well maintained during storage and in particular after storage during distribution and retailing. Thus freshness of apples is well retained up the time of consumption. There are some cultivars such as Breaburn which should not be treated with MCP because it promotes development of disorders such as brown core or brown heart (BBD). It is advisable to reserve MCP treatment only for top quality apples in an optimal ripeness stage. Treatment of apples of too progressed ripeness shows no effect. Future research should focus on establishing cultivar specific optimal ripeness stages for MCP treatment to ensure desired effects and maximal benefits.
Biogenic amines in foods represent a health risk. Researchers from Agroscope and INRAE investigated the formation of these undesirable substances in raclette cheeses by the bacterium Morganella morganii.
At the new Centre of Excellence for Raw-Milk Products, Agroscope and Grangeneuve interviewed test subjects about the popularity of Vacherin Fribourgeois PDO cheeses made from raw and thermised milk. The study showed that the market potential of raw-milk cheeses has not yet been exhausted.
Divico, Agroscope’s new disease-resistant grape variety, is noted for the quality of its wines. Blending trials with the Pinot Noir variety have shown that Divico is also highly suitable for correcting colour intensity in the latter.