DR RICHARD VOLZ (Plant & Food Research)
Longevity of apples in our breeding programme are assessed by storing the apples in conventional cold storage usually at 0.5 degrees for a period of time and then assessing it after that time. So the sort of attributes that we are looking at that can essentially limit an apple’s longevity, its poor textural characteristics, the production of off flavours, and the production of storage related disorders. The symptoms of most storage disorders on the fruit, or on the surface of the fruit usually take the form of some blemish, usually a discoloration, usually brown or black. The fruit can go soggy, and there is a whole lot of different symptoms that are prevalent depending on what storage disorder you are looking at. The essential thing is that they look unsightly, they can themselves produce off flavours in the fruit, and it’s something we don't want in our fruit.