The refractometer determines the sugar content of fruit. The optical measuring device uses light refraction to show the concentration of dissolved substances, and this content approximates the sugar content and is expressed in degrees Brix (° Brix).
The bananas destined for the EU market are not allowed to ripen on the plant as they quickly burst and the texture becomes floury and rotten. They are harvested green in the country of origin and matured in Germany in special ripening chambers for several days at 14-18 °C. The addition of the natural ripening agent ethylene ensures the bananas are ready to eat. The colour of the banana changes from green to yellow and starch is converted into sugar during this process.
The field refers to a specific cultivated plot of land, i.e. an area used for agricultural purposes. The farmer uses a field record to monitor his various agricultural activities on his fields.
The penetrometer determines the firmness of the pulp. This is also an important criterion for determining the optimal harvest time. A punch is pressed into the pulp and the force used is measured in kg/cm².
Calibre denotes the sizing of fruit and vegetables, i.e. apples or courgettes. Sizing is based on weight, diameter or length, and is generally indicated on the labelling.
Tomatoes are among the vegetables that are most sensitive to the cold. Storage below 8-10 °C, e.g. in the refrigerator deteriorates the internal quality, the volatile flavours are not fully formed and the tomatoes therefore lose a great deal of their taste.
Shelf life is the durability of fresh fruit and vegetables between the period after harvesting and the point of sale. Temperature and the storage time of the products in the storeroom shelf or refrigerated shelf are important factors influencing shelf life. Some fruit only becomes enjoyable to eat during the shelf life, e.g. bananas, kiwis, avocados and mangoes.