Fruit Flavour

Why is Fruit Flavour Important?

The flavour of the fruit is very closely linked with the consumer’s preference and continued consumption of any given fruit variety and should be strongly considered. Meeting consumer expectations for flavour of specific fruit, not only causes consumers to buy more fruit, but it allows growers to increase their profitability. Consumers are willing to pay a higher price for distinctly flavourful varieties that are going to enhance their experience consuming fresh fruit.

There is nothing more disappointing for consumers than finding the perfect apple or peach from the grocery store — a beautiful red color, no bruises, a firm texture — but when taking the first bite, the flavour is boring, flat, and is overall a disappointment. Once a consumer has purchased a fruit with little or poor flavour, they are inclined to not buy those fruit again and/or move on to a different grower or a different fruit all together. Producing fruit with complex and delicious flavour is extremely important to the consumer’s enjoyment of their eating experience.

What is Fruit Flavour?

Flavour is described as the interaction between taste and aroma. Taste relates to the ratios and intensities of non-volatile compounds, specifically sugars, and acids. Sugars and acids are detected by five classes of receptors in the tongue – sweet, sour, salty, bitter, and umami (protein taste, represented by glutamate). Volatile compounds, which create the aromas of fruit, are detected by over 650 types of olfactory nerve endings found in the nose.

The sweetness of a fruit is influenced by the quantity and composition of sugars. Higher contents of sugar in the fruit increases the sweetness of the fruit. Additionally, different forms of sugar affect the sweetness of the fruit. In fruit such as apples, peaches, and plums, the main sugars present are sorbitol, sucrose, fructose, and glucose. Each of these sugars have a different degree of sweetness. Fructose has 1.7 times the sweetness of sucrose, while glucose and sorbitol only have 0.8 and 0.6, respectively. For example, if one variety has higher contents of fructose and another variety has higher glucose, the former will taste sweeter.

The acidity of a fruit is influenced by the content and composition of organic acids, and the amount of each type of acid found in each fruit. For example, the dominant acid in apples, peaches, and plums is malic acid.

The balance between the sweetness and acidity of fruit based on the quantity and composition of their sugars and acids is important for developing a complex and interesting taste that will enhance fruit flavour.

Another key component of flavour is aroma. Fruit aroma is influenced by the quantity and composition of volatile compounds. The volatiles that are well-known to affect fruit flavour include esters (fruity aroma), alcohols (fruity or earthy aroma), aldehydes (slightly grassy and bitter aroma), lactones (peach-like aroma), and terpenoids (scented oils aroma). Studies have shown that the flavour intensity of a fruit can be correlated with the quantity and composition of volatiles present. For example, strawberries that presented higher levels of certain key volatiles were perceived as sweeter and highly preferred by consumers, as compared to other strawberry varieties lacking these volatiles.

How is Fruit Flavour Measured?

Fruit flavour can be measured instrumentally as well as through the use of sensory science. Sensory science is a multi-disciplinary field that uses scientific measurements to interpret the human response to the senses of sight, smell, taste, touch, and hearing. This form of science is able to link the product to the person in a direct way.

Instrumentally, sugar content of the fruit is determined by measuring the soluble solid content using a portable refractometer. A refractometer measures how light is bent as it passes through a sample, which is correlated to a specific percentage of sugar in the fruit, and thus is related to fruit sweetness. Titration measures the content of the dominant acid present in the fruit and can also be measured and calculated using portable acidity/pH meters.

Aroma volatiles are challenging to measure with portable instruments. They are quantified by using Gas Chromatography – Mass Spectroscopy (GC-MS), a lab-based technique which helps to separate and identify compounds in their gaseous forms based on their masses.

To correlate these instrumental measurements to consumer perception, two major methods of sensory evaluation are used: consumer testing and descriptive analysis. Consumer testing includes subjective data about the preferences of a large group of untrained tasters (usually more than 100 panelists), while descriptive analysis includes questionnaires for a panel of 8-12 trained tasters who are able to rate specific attributes related to fruit quality.

What Factours Affect Flavor Development?

Genetics

A key factor for determining fruit flavour lays in the genetic background of the variety that was chosen. When determining which variety to establish, it is important to choose varieties that were bred for flavour as one of its priorities. Additionally, the choice of rootstock, for fruit such as apples, can influence fruit flavour potential. Studies have shown that particular rootstocks can affect the levels of organic acids and sugar content found in the same variety of apple.

Environmental factors

Environmental factors also play a hugely important role in affecting the flavour of the fruit and strongly interact with the genetic background. Although often times these factors cannot be controlled, they must be taken into account when aiming to improve the flavour of the fruit that are being produced. The major environmental factors affecting fruit flavour development include temperature, relative humidity, and sunlight during the growing season.

A good practice before establishing a new orchard is to conduct small variety trials to evaluate which varieties are capable of developing flavour under the specific environmental conditions. As there is strong interaction between varieties and their growing environment, a variety that is successful in one area may not be as successful in another region.

Preharvest Factors, Orchard Management, and Cultural Practices

Fruit flavour can be affected by different orchard management practices, such as planting density, tree structure, irrigation regime, light manipulation, crop load, nutrition, and pest control methods.

Practices that increase the amount of sunlight reaching the fruit, such as pruning or the use of reflective groundcovers, have been shown to increase flavour development as well as colour.

Crop load management is another important factor affecting fruit flavour development. In a study done on apples, trees with lower crop loads were found to have fruit with increased flavour development. This was mainly due to higher levels of aroma volatiles and sugars in the apple fruit with lower crop load. Many times, trying to aim for the highest yield will play against flavour development.

Irrigation management can also have an effect on fruit flavour. It is important to maintain balanced irrigation levels in the orchards. Excess irrigation will decrease the overall flavour produced during the fruit growth. Irrigating in intervals to avoid inducing stress on the tree is good practice and will positively impact fruit flavour development.

Concerning nutrition, excessive levels of nitrogen will decrease the “fruity” aromas that are developed in the fruit, while increasing the “green” and “grassy” aromas. Many studies have shown that moderate nitrogen supply for the tree increased fruit flavour, but an excessive amount actually deteriorates fruit flavour.

Fruit Maturity at Harvest

Harvesting practices and the maturity of the fruit at harvest is an often-forgotten key factor in maintaining fruit flavour. Fruit produced for wholesale distribution typically tends to be harvested before fully ripe in order to ensure that the fruit can be transported easily without being damaged. Unfortunately, in this case the fruit’s flavour is likely not completely developed. On the other hand, if fruit are harvested over-mature, there is an increase in the “fermented” flavour, which is disliked by consumers.

Harvesting fruit at the correct time is a ‘balancing act’ between great flavour, overall quality, and shelf-life capacity. Favouring one of these factors over others may affect the marketability of the fruit, so it is of key importance to harvest fruit at the correct time.

https://extension.psu.edu/how-do-fruit-get-their-flavor#.Xw4mhXQvVzo.linkedin

How to be Happy

How To Be Happy – 10 Routine Changes Scientifically Proven
By Juice Daily on May 1, 3:38pm

Nothing spells a bad day more than spilling coffee on a crisp white shirt come Monday morning, but trivial as it may seem, it can be an instant downer on your mood.

While it’s only natural to get in a funk every now and again – according to a British survey, we have at least 10 grumpy days a year (five hours a week) – it can play an unhealthy part in our overall sense of wellbeing.

The biggest mood booster for women, according to the Healthspan survey is ‘me time.’ So while you can’t out run a bad day, you can shape and mould your routine a little bit each day to care of yourself and make the overall outcome that bit brighter.

Here, scientifically proven tweaks to make life happier.

1. Do exercise you like
With music you like. A McMaster University study found runners who exercised to their own playlist managed to increase their sprint performance because they were working out to a soundtrack they enjoyed.

Bodypass resident exercise scientist Georgia van Tiel says the fun factor is everything. “If you hate running or yoga – don’t do it. The body is a smart machine – it knows when you’re doing something it doesn’t like and often will then do the opposite of what’s good for you.”

How do you know what works for you? “Take note of how your mind and body felt after. When the mind is happy, the body will follow.”

2. Practice gratitude, daily

Gratitude may seem a little over saturated on Instagram, but it’s actually a good thing.

The American Psychological Association found when comparing two groups – those who kept a list of things they were grateful for showed significantly higher life satisfaction after ten weeks than those who wrote about things that bugged them.

“Cultivating an ‘attitude of gratitude’ will help sleep, decreases anxiety and depression and promote kinder behaviour,” says Sydney-based naturopath Anthia Koullouros. “Keep a journal and recording one to five things a day you’re grateful for. My clients who do keep one have a happier disposition, fewer physical problems and take the time to take care of themselves.”

3. Drink enough water
Sounds simple enough (and a bore to hear) but keeping hydrated could be the key to boosting happiness.

The University of Connecticut found when we’re mildly dehydrated, it not only leads to headaches, fatigue and difficulty concentrating, it affects mood as well.

4. Wake up earlier each day

What is it that old saying…‘the early bird gets the worm.’ Well it might just have scientific backing.

The University of Toronto found early risers feel more awake, alert, happier and motivated to tackle the day over night owls.

While waking in the am is never easy (ever), you know those ‘activewear’ types up at the crack of dawn are onto a good thing when the mere glimpse of them radiates wellness.

Aly Clarke, natural early riser and yoga teacher at BodyMindLife says by starting early helps awaken the soul. “I wake and am at my desk or on my mat before the sun is up so I can tackle the day,” says Clarke. “The stillness allows me to write, design, exercise, dance with ideas or play with new yoga sequences.”

5. Take a moment to meditate

It’s as simple as having a little quiet time each day to give back to ourselves, yet the majority of us can’t seem to find time to fit it into our schedule.

A study from the University of Sydney revealed those who meditated regularly for at least two years are healthier and happier than non-meditators.

“From the first time you meditate, changes in the neural wiring of your brain begin to occur – stress decreases and your focus, concentration and productivity increases,” says Nikki Jankelowitz from Centred Meditation. “Physically you also transform – blood pressure lowers, digestion improves, fatigue decreases and your immune system strengthens.”

6. Integrate weights
You don’t have to compete in weight lifting to get familiar with dumbbells. Weight training is quite literally a ‘pick me up.’

A Journal of Strength and Conditioning Report found even weight novices can get happy gains, revealing short term resistance training offers a bunch of psychological benefits.

To get started – “Don’t be scared of weights, find a trainer and get them to take you through. Adding a weight session or two weekly will help you see some real changes in your body,” says van Tiel.

“Note – the scales will go up but it’s actually a good thing. Having more lean muscle over fat is better for you, especially when heart disease is the number one killer in Australia.”

7. Shop consciously

Have you ever chosen the single origin coffee in a sea of cafes? Or sourced locally grown, organic produce from a farmers market? Maybe you should.

Being an eco-friendly shopper not only helps the environment, it gifts you with a greater sense of wellbeing too. A Knox College study found when people make sustainable purchases focused on personal growth, family, community, spirituality and nature they live happier lives.

“Eating sustainably not only serves us nutritionally but considers the source of our food: healthy plants and healthy animals means a happy outcome for us too (less chemical intervention),” says Koullouros. “Plus it feels good to eat animals and plants that have been raised and grown as nature intended.”

8. Organise your week
If you’ve got too many tabs open (physical or mental), hit refresh and get organised.

A Princeton University study says our brain can’t handle clutter – the more we have around us the harder it has to work to filter them out, causing it to fatigue and stop functioning at full capacity.

“I recommend taking time on Sunday to prepare both mentally and physically for the week,” says Clarke whose dual role as both marketing manager and yoga teacher at BodyMindLife Clarke requires considerable organisation.

“I will often go to my favourite cafe or to a park, look at my meetings for the week (making note of any preparation needed), schedule in important phone calls, social time with my friends, book my weekly yoga classes and then head to the market to stock up on food for the week (the thought of having to face a busy supermarket on Monday night fills me with dread).”

9. Smell the roses

Surround your space with scents. A study from Rutgers University found that those who spent time in a florally scented room used three times as many happy words when asked to write about three life events versus those in a room filled with classic fragrances such as Chanel No. 5 and Johnson & Johnson baby powder or non-scented air.

Not a floral fan? There are a myriad of scents that can make you merry. Research shows lemon, vanilla, licorice, lavender and even sweat will just as easily do the trick!

10. Let music in
We listen to it when we’re sad, when we’re in transit, when we’re melancholy, but often when we’re happy too.

The catch is – you don’t need to be happy first to hit play. Simply putting on an upbeat soundtrack will get you there says the University of Missouri that found those who actively listen to happy music experience a rush of feel-good neurotransmitter dopamine to their brain’s pleasure centre.

Yoga uses music to uplift constantly. “As teachers, we put a lot of love into selecting the tracks played in class, building a set in the same way a DJ does – to uplift and inspire, soothe and settle or invoke a feeling of grounding and strength,” says Clarke.

Make like Clarke and create a special soundtrack that signifies happiness to you. To get started, see BodyMindLife teacher Christian Ralston’s ultimate yin yoga playlist here.

Originally on Juice Daily.

Stone Fruit is a Drupe

drupe noun
\ ˈdrüp \
Definition of drupe
: a one-seeded indehiscent fruit having a hard bony endocarp, a fleshy mesocarp, and a thin exocarp that is flexible (as in the cherry) or dry and almost leathery (as in the almond)

The Comprehensive Stone Fruits List
A comprehensive list of delicious stone fruits.
You’ve heard the designation “stone fruits” and you’ve wondered: What is considered a stone fruit? Is an apple a stone fruit? Are pomegranates stone fruit? Are grapes stone fruits? Does it have something to do with seeds? With fruit pits? Find the answers to these questions and more with our comprehensive stone fruits list.

What Are Stone Fruits?
A stone fruit is a fruit that has flesh enclosed around a stone, i.e. a pit. Flesh enclosing a stone sounds like some kind of warped Edgar Allan Poe plot, but the most easily recognizable stone fruit is simply a peach: fruit flesh on the outside, peach pit within.

Stone fruits all contain less than 1 gram of fat, about an average of 67 calories per chopped cup, and of course they are rich in vitamins and minerals like potassium, calcium, vitamin A, and vitamin C. With benefits that include lowering cholesterol and supporting healthy digestion due to their fiber content, stone fruits are a nutritional treasure trove.

Stoned Immaculate: The Comprehensive Stone Fruits List
We’ll identify the top stone fruits and offer some extra information on each one.

The Comprehensive Stone Fruits List

Peaches
Fuzzy on the outside with a hard, sharp pit in the middle, the peach is like the opposite of the character Thornmallow from Jane Yolen’s young adult book Wizard’s Hall (who is named to be sharp on the outside and soft within). If you’ve ever cracked open a peach pit, you’ll find that there’s a seed within that protective shell (or endocarp).

Peaches come in two different types, freestone peaches and clingstone peaches. The freestone variety has flesh that falls easily away from the hard pit inside, while clingstone peaches cleave to their pit, or the pit clings to the peach flesh depending on how you look at it. You can find yellow peaches and white ones, but both will bring a considerable amount of vitamins A and C (25 grams of vitamin A per chopped cup and 10 grams of vitamin C).

Naturally sweet, you don’t need the extra sugars and syrups often found in canned peaches, so long as you can buy your peaches fresh, ripened (meaning not at all green), and unbruised. You can tell a good, ripe peach by the squeeze: it should be firm but springy enough to give slightly when you apply pressure, like taking a healthy, young person by the arm, say, on their wedding day, to escort them down the aisle.

Interestingly enough, peaches do not get sweeter the more they ripen, as other fruits tend to, because once they are harvested, their sugar production stops, so you’ll want to eat them as soon as possible, or otherwise freeze/dry/preserve them.

They can be a wonderful topping on breakfast foods like oatmeal or pancakes or in a peach and granola smoothie. You can put peaches in pies, in cobblers, and even on the grill to really bring out the depth of their flavor, and you’re getting serious health benefits when you eat them too. According to a study done at Texas A&M, peach and plum extract were shown to slow the growth and spread of breast cancer cells. Eating peaches can also increase the level of collagen in your body due to their high amount of vitamin C.

Plums
Have you ever checked if something is plumb against a wall, or decided to plumb the depths of a literal or figurative deep well? And did you in the next moment think of the plum fruit and then want one? You’re not alone!

The verb “to plumb” means to probe deeply as a plumber does, whereas if something is plumb, it is exactly vertical, or it is utterly and squarely sure, like when you’re plumb tuckered out. The plum fruit however is a stone fruit, a sweet, purple-skinned beauty so desirable that when someone says they just got a plum deal, they mean they’ve just secured a rich, luxurious win.

With 17 grams of vitamin A and 10 grams of vitamin C per plum, these little fruits pack a lot of nutrients. A good and ripe plum should be heavy, and have springy flesh under its skin, but a hard plum can be quickly ripened at home by placing it in a brown paper bag (it’ll go even more fast if you put it next to a banana—bananas ripen so notoriously quickly that they can make other fruits do so too; bananas are influencers like that).

Like peaches, plums also won’t sweeten more as they soften, so get them while they’re ripe and include them in salads or desserts, or bake a pie if you have the time and desire. Plums combined with yogurt especially have been shown to protect against diseases like type 2 diabetes due to the prebiotic properties in each.

Nectarines
The nectarine is a cousin of the peach. While both fruits come in clingstone and freestone varieties, and in white and yellow coloring, they are still distinctly separate fruits. In appearance, scent, and texture, nectarines are smoother (no peach fuzz), more aromatic, and often smaller and firmer than fully grown peaches. Nectarines tend also to be more susceptible to plant diseases, so when purchasing them, make sure they are unbruised and unpunctured, and are instead vibrant and plump.

With around 88 calories per fruit, nectarines are high in fiber, essential vitamins, and beta-carotene, an antioxidant that provides support for strong bones, skin, and teeth. Make a nectarine upside-down cake, call the recipe a Nectarine Dream cake, and impress everyone who comes to your table.

Apricots
Apricots are a bright orangey-yellow golden-skinned stone fruit. Super high in potassium, vitamin A, and vitamin C, ripe apricots have flavonoid phytonutrients called catechins that provide anti-inflammatory benefits when you eat them.

Smaller than both peaches and nectarines, apricots should be somewhat soft when squeezed to test for ripeness, but not mushy. Wonderful to eat fresh and whole, apricots can also be baked, dried for trail mixes, or dehydrated into crisps.

Apriums
Get ready for some mad science: if you haven’t heard of apriums before, that’s because they’re a hybrid fruit made out of mostly apricot, but with 25% plum thrown in for good measure. While they taste mostly like apricots, they are not as juicy, but they are sweeter as they’re higher in complex sugars and fructose. They contain the same vitamins and nutrients you’ve come to expect like vitamins A and C, and if their intensely unique flavor is something you want to experience, make sure you find them ripe (neither green nor brown), and enjoy.

Raspberries and Blackberries
Surprise: not exactly berries! Unlike blueberries for example, blackberries and raspberries are known in the Western United States as caneberries, and elsewhere like the Southern U.S. as brambleberries. Botanically they are not berries at all, but instead an aggregate fruit, made up of tiny drupelet clusters, and those drupelet clusters are all stone fruits. These non-berries by any other name are still fantastic for your health, with raspberries containing strong antioxidants that fight circulatory diseases and cancer, and blackberries good for promoting oral health.

Mulberries
Just like the blackberries and raspberries that have been misclassified, the mulberry is also considered a stone fruit because it’s made up of clusters of drupes. Mulberries are considered a superfood, with health benefits that include aiding anemia, diabetes, heart disease, and arthritis. So here we go, “round the mulberry bush,” looking to gain their practically miraculous healing properties.

Pluots
Another hybrid much like the apricot/plum splice that is the aprium, but this time in reverse percentages; while the aprium is made up of the ratio 75/25 in favor of apricots, the pluot is 75/25 in favor of plums. As a result, pluots look, taste, and feel much more like plums, with only a 3-week-long period of ripeness. So if you find them between their summer season of July through September, get them while the getting’s good, because they’re as rare as they come.

Cherries
Cherries come in a great variety, like Montmorency sour cherries, which are the brightest red no matter what you do to them (freeze, dry, juice, etc.), and Bing sweet cherries, which are purplish-black dark cherries. All of them have little cherry pits, so all of them are stone fruits.

Cherries offer vitamins A and C, as well as antioxidants and melatonin, which is important for proper sleep and wakefulness (make cherries a bedtime snack!). Tart cherries are at their best between July and August, and are beautiful and delicious in pies and other desserts. Of course, there’s always maraschino cherries in the off season—neon red and pitted so that their stems are left attached, for making a Manhattan in the winter months, or for putting the cherry on top of your sundae.

Mangoes
With a smaller pit relative to their overall size than most of the fruits on this list, mangoes are still a stone fruit, with nutrients like fiber, folic acid, vitamin A, and vitamin C. A ripe mango will smell sweet from the outside, and should be heavier the riper they get (so heft as you choose while shopping). Add tropical color and flavor to a fruit salad, and know that the benefits from mangoes can help boost immunity, promote gut health, lower cholesterol, and even aid in weight loss.

Green Almonds
Here’s a fruit in disguise: green almonds are non-processed almonds. Green almonds are baby almonds, taken from the tree before they could dry out, harden, and split (thus producing the almond nut you’re more familiar with). Only around during a few short weeks in spring, they’re more easily found in grocery stores around California, where almonds are grown.

Fuzzy and green with a jelly-like consistency inside, green almonds have a tangy, sweet taste and a recognizable almond flavor. High in fiber, healthy fat, and protein, green almonds are the stone fruit that becomes a nut that you can easily eat as a tasty snack.

Lychees
The fruit of the Chinese lychee tree, lychees have a thin, sunset-red, rough skin around a small white fruit with a large central pit. The flesh is sweet-smelling and translucent, with a slightly tart flavor some describe as a cross between a tropical pear and a watermelon. They’re often served in cocktails like mojitos and martinis, or paired with cream cheese as a snack and palate cleanser.

Olives
Olives are considered stone fruits because of their pits, which you’ll often see replaced in cocktail olives with a pimento (a small bit of a cherry pepper). If you’re looking for a stone fruit that isn’t sweet, look no further, as olives are usually prepared salty, and are often used in martinis (though not in James Bond’s martini—he takes it shaken, not stirred, and with a lemon peel, not an olive).

High in antioxidants and vitamin E, olives (or the compound oleuropein derived from olives) have been found to help the body up its insulin secretion, an asset to maintaining a healthy metabolism.

Coconuts
Another surprise: coconuts are not nuts, but single-seed stone fruits. The coconut you buy is the endocarp, which (as you may remember from the peach pit discussion at the top of this list) is the case surrounding the seed. A coconut in the wild is an outer husk surrounding the endocarp, which surrounds the seed. The coconut left unharvested is itself the seed—it will float away, implant on a new shore, and sprout from one of the three bowling-ball-esque holes or pores that it has. If harvested, however, the fruit of the coconut is the white flesh inside, which can be shredded, milked, and extracted into oil by humans. In some ways the coconut is a nut, a seed, and a reverse fruit all at the same time, and from it we can reap a ton of benefits.

Dates
Often found sun-dried, dates are a tropical and delightful stone fruit. Fresh dates are great for helping with weight loss, and are full of the essential nutrients vitamin A, vitamin K, phosphorus, and magnesium. High in fiber and a natural sweetener, dates may promote brain heath, and they contain free radical-fighting antioxidants.

Food from a Stone
If you never thought you could get food from a stone, think again! As these stone fruits show, there is a wealth of health benefits to be found in some of the most surprising places, like in and around pits. When the spring and summer seasons come around, be on the lookout for these fruits, to have at them while they’re ripe for enjoyment.

The Comprehensive Stone Fruits List

Bookpurnong Fruits