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The Problem of Anthracnose Disease of Chilli

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Chilli changes in color begin from green, yellow or red when it ripe. Chilli is a commercialized fruit vegetable among the Malaysians which becomes a great source of vitamin A, B, C, calcium, phosphorus and iron. Chilli is utilized in most cooking, basically as flavoring. Other than that, it is used to enhance texture and coloring in food industry. Chilli also can be consumed fresh, dried, prickled, spice or processed into sauce. An alkaloid compound called as capsaicin produces the pungency of chillies. Fresh chilli can be keep for 3-6 weeks at 5-6 with 90-95% relative humidity.

During postharvest storage, the most problems occur in maintaining the good quality and prolong shelf life of fresh produce associated with pathogen infection, transpiration and senescence. Among these factors, microbiological diseases are the cause leading to postharvest losses due to higher in economic losses. A study by Awang et al (2011) revealed that almost 50% of postharvest losses are due to anthracnose caused by C. gloeosporioides. characterized by very dark, sunken lesions, Infected plants and natural products have small, water-soaked, sunken and circular spots that become blackish, emit spore masses and cause decay. This illness postures a serious threat as the spores infect the fruit within the field and the disease remains latent until the fruit is in storage.

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This infection can be seen in matured or overripe fruit tissue during storage and diminishes the financial value of crops in tropical, subtropical and temperate regions. Anthracnose shows up in developing and mature plant tissues. The ability to cause latent diseases has made it one of the foremost important postharvest pathogens.

Environmental conditions favoring the pathogen are high temperature (28 C being optimal) and high humidity helps in the release of spores. Disease severity is related to weather conditions. Extreme temperatures, low humidity, dry weather and sunlight rapidly inactivate fungi.

The major constraint in chilli after harvested is the anthracnose disease which cause in high economic losses. To solve this, utilization of manufactured chemicals as fungicides is the essential strategy of control of postharvest fungal rot. However, in other case, a few fungicides are not utilized for postharvest treatment or have been evacuated from the market due to possible toxicological risks. Hence, there’s a need to create modern and effective post- and pre-harvest disinfestation strategies. In this way, the application of natural products can be a really attractive strategy for postharvest illness control of fresh produce.

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