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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: ENHANCEMENT OF THE QUALITY AND MICROBIAL STABILITY OF FRESH FRUITS AND VEGETABLES WITH EDIBLE COATINGS AND OTHER SURFACE TREATMENTS

Location:

Title: Laser labeling, a safe technology to label produce

Authors
item Sood, Preeti -
item Exteberria, Ed -
item Narciso, Jan
item Ference, Christopher

Submitted to: American Society of Horticulture Science Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: April 1, 2009
Publication Date: July 1, 2009
Citation: Sood, P., Exteberria, E., Narciso, J.A., Ference, C.M. 2009. Laser labeling, a safe technology to label produce. HortScience. 44(4):1169.

Technical Abstract: Labeling of the produce has gained marked attention in recent years. Laser labeling technology involves the etching of required information on the surface using a low energy CO2 laser beam. The etching forms alphanumerical characters by pinhole dot matrix depressions. These openings can lead to water loss and provide an entry site for pathogens. The present study was undertaken on citrus fruits (Citrus reticulata and Citrus paradisi), tomato (Lycopersicum esculentum) and pepper (Capsicum annum) focusing on water loss, peel appearance and potential pathogen entry. The experiments measured water loss from etched areas and decay after exposing the etched areas to decay pathogens. There was no decay reported in and around the etched areas in citrus fruits while tomato and pepper had some decay. Water loss was negligible in all the four cases, especially if waxed after labeling. The amount of water loss in the selected fruits and vegetables was different from each type. Label distortion was proportional with relative humidities and time in storage.

Last Modified: 8/21/2014
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