Nova Scotia Apples - Storage and Handling of Apples
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Storage and Handling of Apples

Apples need to be kept cold immediately after harvest so that they are fresh and crunchy when they reach their destination. Apple growers use two main types of storage: cold storage and controlled atmosphere (or CA) storage.

Apples kept in cold storage are chilled to around zero degrees Celsius. They are kept at this temperature to slow down their ripening.

CA storage stands for controlled atmosphere storage. The air that we breathe consists mostly of oxygen, carbon dioxide and nitrogen. Apples in CA storage are stored in an airtight room with less oxygen and more carbon dioxide than there is in the air we breathe everyday. CA storage extends the life of apples so we can enjoy Nature's Crunchy Munchy all year-round!

At home, apples should be stored in your refrigerator in a plastic bag with small holes in it. It is important to remove from the bag any apples that are bruised. One bruised apple can spoil the whole bunch!

Storage Experiment
Just how important is it to store apples in a cold place? Apples will rot ten times faster at room temperature than they will in your refrigerator. But don't take our word for it - try it for yourself.

You will need:
3 apples - all of the same variety
a thermometer
a piece of aluminum foil
a refrigerator
Place the first apple on a table or countertop where the temperature is around 20 C.

Place the second apple in the refrigerator.
Wrap the third apple in the sheet of aluminum foil.
Place this apple in the refrigerator, too.
Wait 7 to 10 days; then compare the three apples.

Your Results:
Do any of the apples still look good enough to eat? Which one(s)?
Which apple feels firmest when you touch it? Which feels the softest?
Cut each apple in half. What colour is each of the apples? Which apple looks the best? Which apple looks the worst?
Smell each of the apples? Which smells the best? Which smells the worst?
What do you think is the best way to store apples - at room temperature, uncovered in the refrigerator, or wrapped in foil in the refrigerator?

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