The effect of vinyl wrapping on the quality and chilling susceptibility of small-grade okra (
[L.] Moench.) was studied with the aim of improving storage. Pods that were stored in the air at 2–10°C rapidly dehydrated and quality decreased within two to four days. At 2°C, chilling injury was observed after four days. Pods enclosed in vinyl stored satisfactorily for ten days at 2–10°C, but on transfer to 22°C for three days deteriorated. During storage, colour intensity and firmness decreased, while a progressive increase in respiration (initially high at 2°C) indicated incipient chilling before the visual appearance of symptoms. Whereas pods were most susceptible to chilling at 2°C, the quality of those stored at 8–10°C was reduced due to fungal growth particularly during shelf life. Therefore, for best quality retention small-grade okra should be packaged and stored at 6°C.
Keywords: okra, storage, chilling injury, packaging, quality