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LEVERAGING ESTABLISHED RESEARCH PLANTINGS OF BREADFRUIT (ARTOCARPUS ALTILIS) TO UNDERSTAND DRIVERS OF FRUIT QUALITY AND ITS IMPACTS ON POST-HARVEST PROCESSES AND PROFITS

Investigators
Noa Lincoln; Radovich, Theodore; Jha, Ra, .; Silva, Jo, .; Kirk, Em, .
Institutions
University of Hawaii
Start date
2021
End date
2026
Objective
Objectives: Our objectives, briefly stated, are as follows:Utilize established statewide variety trial to examine the response of fruit quality and quantity to environment x cultivar interactions. Ongoing measurements of tree health and growth rates will be taken at the breadfruit variety trial sites throughout the life of the project. These include standard measurements such as height, DBH, SPAD, fluorescence, water exchange, and foliar nutrients that have been collected for the past two years. For a two year period, fruit from each tree at all sites will be collected bi-weekly to assess phenological and yield variations across cultivars and sites. During the second year of collections, fruit quality will be assessed concerning caloric density, starch quality, and macro and micronutrient variations.Utilize existing nutrient deficiency trial to assess the response of fruit quality and quantity to nutrients x cultivar interactions.Measurements, methods, and timing of this Objective are identical to Objective 1, except that they will be applied to an established nutrient deficiency trial.Utilize existing spacing trial to assess the response of fruiting quality and quantity to pruning and spacing. Utilizing an established planting density trial, a design of pruning and spacing will be conducted for two breadfruit cultivars. We will utilize photography analyses and GIS modeling to examine light dynamics at the tree and orchard level. Bi-weekly harvests of trees will be conducted over a three year period to assess yields in a spatially explicit manner (i.e., trees will be harvested by sections so that fruit set can be correlated to light interactions). The relationship between yield, fruit quality and light interception will be assessed.Quantify the role of fruit quality to harvest and post-harvest stressors. This core objective relates the varying fruit quality produced by the trials in Objectives 1-3 to harvest and post-harvest stresses as fruit travels to aggregators and processors. The response to impact, compression, and temperature will be assessed. Primary responses of interest are firmness, color, texture, and ethylene and CO2 production.Build economic balance sheets for participating farmers and processors to quantify the distribution of costs and labor, and contextualize previous Objectives in terms of profitability. This objective contextualizes the results into meaningful impact on the industry by weighting the potential costs of additional management against the potential benefits of additional fruit quality, quantity, or reduced losses. Surveys and structured interviews will be conducted with producers and aggregators to quantify the relative costs of pruning fertilization, harvesting, post-harvest handling, and spoilage. Results will be used to create cost-benefit analyses of various changes in management.Disseminate results through workshops, scientific papers, conferences, and extension efforts. Results will be disseminated through multiple pathways, including scientific papers and conferences, direct industry communication, social media platforms, and extension publications and workshops. We aim to culminate this and other research into a revised production guide of best practices for breadfruit.
Funding Source
Nat'l. Inst. of Food and Agriculture
Project source
View this project
Project number
HAW08703-G
Accession number
1025060
Categories
Chemical Contaminants