Crop year, harvest date and clone effects on fruit characteristics, chemical composition and olive oil stability from an Empeltre clonal selection grown in Aragon.J Sci Food Agric. 2022 Oct; 102(13):5778-5786.JS
In this study, the effects of crop year, harvest date and clone on the fruit characteristics and chemical composition of Empeltre olive oils were evaluated. For this purpose, the weight and oil content of fruit and the fatty acid composition, polyphenol content and oxidative stability of the olive oil was analysed throughout ripening during three successive seasons.
The weight and moisture in the fruit, as well as the fatty acids and polyphenol content in the olive oil, were mainly affected by crop year. In contrast, the stability was strongly influenced by the harvest date. Both factors had an influence on the fruit's oil content. The clone was not a substantial component in terms of variability, although the interaction with crop year was notable for some of the characteristics. The oil content increased significantly along with the harvest date and reached maximum values in the last period (44.9%). Conversely, stability and polyphenols decreased significantly (depending on the year, by 30-70%) from October to December, reaching the highest mean values between 1 October and 10 November (15.5 h; 500 mg caffeic acid kg-1). Oleic acid and monounsaturated/polyunsaturated fatty acids (MUFA/PUFA) did not show significant differences depending on the harvest date, but between years, with 2018 having the highest percentage of oleic acid (72.72%) and MUFA/PUFA (8.38).
Early harvesting of Empeltre olives would provide considerably more stable olive oils, regardless of the clone selected, with higher phenolic content. It would not affect the MUFA/PUFA ratio, mainly influenced by the crop year. © 2022 The Authors. Journal of The Science of Food and Agriculture published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Society of Chemical Industry.