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Antioxidants in fresh and frozen fruit and vegetables: Impact study of varying storage conditions

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Graham BonwickORCiD


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Antioxidants and other key nutritional components of food are known to be affected by factors such as handling and storage conditions. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of storage conditions on a range of fresh and frozen fruit and vegetables. Fresh produce were stored in a general household refrigerator at 4oC for up to 3 days and a comparison made with equivalent frozen produce stored in a domestic freezer at -20oC. Six fresh and frozen produce were sourced from local supermarkets in the Chester area which included: • Blueberries (Vaccinium angustifolium) • Raspberries (Rubus idaeus) • Peas (Pisum sativum) • Green Beans (Phaseolus vulgaris) • Cauliflower (Brassica oleracea) • Baby Sweetcorn (Zea mays var. saccharata) The fresh and frozen produce were analysed using published methods for: • Vitamin C • Total polyphenols • Total anthocyanins: • Carotenoids: β-carotene and lutein From the initial data obtained, the following general conclusions can be made: • The concentrations measured in frozen produce generally resembled those observed in the corresponding fresh produce prior to refrigerated storage. • Analyte concentrations in fresh produce frequently exhibited a decrease during refrigerated storage, to levels below those observed in the corresponding frozen produce. The effects were most noticeable in the soft fruits. • Concentrations were frequently lowest after 3 days of refrigerated storage.. Whilst general trends could be derived from the analysis undertaken, further investigation is considered desirable. In particular, the use of fruit and vegetables where their provenance is fully understood is considered highly desirable.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Bonwick GA, Birch C

Publication type: Report

Publication status: Published

Series Title:

Year: 2014

Print publication date: 14/02/2014

Acceptance date: 14/02/2014

Institution: British Frozen Food Federation

Place Published: University of Chester