The effect of fluorescent light and packaging materials on the shelf life of plantain and banana chips during storage
The effect of light on the shelf life of two African plantain landraces and one cooking banana hybrid were investigated. Thin pulp slices of green unripe fruit were deep-fried in vegetable oil until crisp. The chips were packed in transparent and polythene bags and stored in a wooden cupboard specially designed for this study while some samples were kept outside the box. The cupboard is made up of two compartments, and the upper one is lighted with fluorescent tube, while the lower compartment is dark. The temperature in the lighted, unlighted compartment, and outside were 30-33oC, 24-27oC, and 24-26oC, respectively. Colour changes were determined every 24 hours by visual comparative of chips colour with a colour chart designed by the International Network for the Improvement of Banana and Plantain (INIBAP). It was observed that chips stored in the upper compartment of the cupboard where fluorescent tube was used developed objectionable flavour after a week of storage. Chips from Agbagba, Obino l'Ewai and BITA 3 packed in black polythene and stored inside the dark box versus lighted and outside had a shelf life of 147 days, 136 days and 45 days respectively. In contrast, chips from Agbagba and Obino l'Ewai packed in transparent bags and stored in lighted box maintained its yellow colour for 3 days each and 5 days for BITA 3. Generally, chips in black bags stored better than those in transparent bags irrespective of storage conditions. Similarly, chips packed in transparent polythene and stored in unlighted box had a better storage life compared to samples packed in transparent bag and exposed to light.
Keywords:fluorescent light, packaging materials, shelf life, cooking banana hybrid, yellow colour.
AJAZEB Vol. 7 2005: pp. 19-22