University of Hawaii at Manoa
Industrial Technology Institute (Sri Lanka)
Nancy Chen; Shanthi Wilson Wijeratnam; Ilmi Hewajulige; Shiranthi Perera; Chamari Wickramathilaka; Chamila Wijesinghe
This proposal brings together two parallel research programs being done in Sri Lanka using natural coating and herbal extracts with efforts in Hawaii to use natural epiphytic microorganisms to control postharvest diseases. Essential oils are complex volatile compounds produced in various higher plant parts such as leaves, flowers, bark and roots. Volatile compounds from plants can inhibit the growth of fungal pathogens and evaporate without leaving residues and are considered benign from a health perspective. Epiphytic microorganisms isolated from papaya fruit are being evaluated for their ability to control postharvest disease by their actions as antagonistic microorganisms to pathogens. This Hawaii research follows from our successful isolation of a yeast for pineapple postharvest disease control. The proposal aims to develop and evaluate biological-based, nontoxic, environmentally suitable approach for postharvest disease control. The output from this project provides an alternative postharvest disease control approach to fungicide in conventional and organic mango and papaya production. The technology developed in this research will be introduced to extension officers via workshops to be held at the Vidhatha collection and distribution centers in Sri Lanka.