The importance of harvest and packaging logistics in the commercialization of blueberries

To deliver a consistent product of homogeneous quality, one must know the specific characteristics of the cultivated varieties, their strengths and limitations, and handle the basic concepts of post-harvest.

The quality and condition of the fruit are two elements that have become essential to remain competitive in the global blueberry market. Consumers' demands are increasing and it is no longer enough just to comply with the BBC (bloom, brix, size), but demands are added regarding the good taste and even the color of the fruit, as well as aesthetic elements of good appearance.

It goes without saying that in international standards there is no longer room for deformed or immature fruits, or strange flavors, not even with signs of fungus or rot. The rejection of shipments causes great losses to producers and incidentally a loss of prestige for the brand and the export industry.

A gravitating aspect

The logistics in the harvesting and packing process is one of the gravitating aspects in the quality and condition of the fruit in its commercialization stage. A good methodology and planning, the professionalization of the process, the good use of technological and logistical resources, and efficiency in the packaging process are technical requirements that can guarantee the success or failure of the entire production in the markets.

This aspect of the blueberry production process will be discussed by the researcher Bruno Defilippi, in a technical talk to address "Quality and condition of the fruit: Importance of harvesting and packaging logistics in the marketing of blueberries", on Thursday, August 27 from 10.30 am (Chilean time) in the context of International Blueberry Month.

Updating or acquiring knowledge on this subject is extremely necessary for producers. The blueberry is a very delicate fruit to face the stress of the harvest and postharvest, it has a thin epidermis that suffers mechanical damage during its handling and dehydration due to its pedicel wound when detaching it from the plant, and it is very susceptible to rotting and softening.

Varieties and variants

There are many variants that must be combined to guarantee a good harvest, and these are multiplied when it is necessary to guarantee that the fruit has a good arrival in distant destination markets and the final consumer.

The cultivation of the blueberry has a high number of species and varieties of plants, and each one of them has specific characteristics. There is a varietal effect on the quality and condition of the fruit at the destination and this implies a great challenge in terms of making the correct decisions regarding the harvest indexes by variety, such as when to harvest or until when to harvest.

It all starts in the garden

The quality and condition of the fruit is also influenced by agronomic management factors, particularly those related to the regulation of fruit load and nutrition of the orchards and at the same time, by the climatic conditions that influence the crop in each season. The blueberry spreads every day to more and different agroclimatic zones and with different pre-harvest conditions regarding irrigation, nutrition or care.

To deliver a consistent product of homogeneous quality, it is necessary to know the specific characteristics of the cultivated varieties, their strengths and limitations, and handle the basic concepts of postharvest fruit, developing technologies appropriate to their own conditions, in addition to being well informed of the market requirements, in terms of its limitations and risks.

To participate in the talk "Quality and condition of fruit: Importance of harvesting and packaging logistics in the marketing of blueberries" on Thursday 27 from 10.30 am (Chilean time), you can connect from anywhere in the world in the following link:

Source
Martín Carrillo O. - Blueberries Consulting

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