University of California

Ask the Produce Docs (Commodity)

What effect does fluorescent lighting have on banana ripening?

Category
  • Banana
Question

I received some interesting questions at my job:
1) Would leaving on fluorescent lights in a banana ripening room affect the fruit?
2) Would leaving the fluorescent lights on assist in prohibiting mold growth on the bananas? (Y.R.)

Answer

I do not know of any way fluorescent lights would directly affect banana ripening.  This is especially the case because the fruit is in boxes and the boxes are palletized so only a tiny amount of the fruit would actually be exposed to the light from the lamps.  Perhaps there is some indirect effect but I am not aware of anything.

I am not a pathologist but I have never heard that fluorescent lamps retard decay development.

One effect they do have is to increase electricity use.  It takes energy to operate them and energy to remove the heat they produce.  They should be turned off when not needed for fruit inspection.

Jim Thompson

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