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New Zealand Plant Protection 66 (2013): 45-53

The potential of using low oxygen and ethyl formate or ethyl acetate to disinfest fresh fruit in storage

L.E. Jamieson, N.E.M. Page-Weir, A. Chhagan, P.G. Connolly, J. Poulton and A.M. Kean


Low oxygen and/or 'generally recognised as safe' (GRAS)/food additive (FA) treatments in combination with cool storage have the potential to disinfest a range of commodities of various pests. This paper reports on research to determine the tolerance of second/third and fifth instar codling moth larvae, fifth instar lightbrown apple moth larvae, mixed stages of greedy scale and obscure mealybugs, and diapausing two-spotted mite adults to ultra low oxygen (ULO, <0.5% O2) and ULO combined with two GRAS/ FA compounds, ethyl acetate and ethyl formate. ULO alone did not consistently enhance mortality of these pests compared with air cool storage. However, addition of 3000-5000 ppm of ethyl acetate or ethyl formate reduced the time taken to achieve 99% mortality from weeks or months to between 8 h and 5 days, depending on the pest.

Keywords: coolstorage, GRAS, ULO, codling moth, lightbrown apple moth, mealybug, scale, two-spotted mite, ethyl acetate, ethyl formate.

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