Hazel Technologies Brings Quality Benefits to Lime Growers and Wholesalers; Andrea Rivera, Amanda Horney, and Farris Martinous Discuss
CHICAGO, IL - Shoppers pick up limes for the pucker and acid they provide to drinks and dishes, and one freshness indicator they keep an eye out for is the green skin. So when Hazel Technologies endeavored to slow the yellowing process of limes, it was a feat to jump on board with. The company collaborated with Pharr, Texas-based produce shipper London Fruit and Pittsburg, Kansas-based produce wholesaler Martinous Produce Company to extend the freshness of their limes with Hazel 100™.
“Consistently greener skin in Hazel 100-treated limes in this trial confirms our technology’s ability to extend the shelf-life of limes,” said Andrea Rivera, Postharvest Customer Success Manager at Hazel Technologies. “Adding those additional days gives the lime industry more time to get high-quality fruit to people wanting the freshest limes they can buy.”
As noted in the release, limes have experienced exponential growth in the United States over the last decade, thanks to the everyday shopper’s interest in the category. The retail availability of limes per person nearly doubled over the last decade, going from 2.4 lbs in 2010 to 3.9 lbs in 2020, according to the United States Department of Agriculture.
With more shoppers looking for perfectly green limes, a key indicator of freshness for the fruit, growers and wholesalers are turning to technologies like Hazel 100 to ensure their fruit makes it to retailers in the greenest and freshest state possible.
“Hazel 100 is a very cost-effective value-add that helps extend lime shelf-life for our customers,” said Amanda Horney, Business Development Manager at London Fruit. “The product provides them with a sense of security, especially right now, near the end of the summer when limes turn yellow so quickly. It’s the perfect product to extend their shelf-life.”
During a 20-day trial in 2021, Hazel Tech’s post-harvest team compared the overall skin color found in 10 boxes of Hazel 100-treated limes and 10 boxes of untreated limes. On days four through 20 of the trial, results showed Hazel 100 sachets reduced yellowing in the lime’s exterior across the board. On the final day of the trial, 30 percent of the treated limes had greener skin than the control.
“I heard about Hazel® through our lime supplier, London Fruit,” Farris Martinous, Owner of Martinous Produce Company. “We started adding their product, Hazel 100, to our limes, and it’s really helped us with the shelf-life for our retail customers. Since we’ve been using it, I don’t think we’ve had any problems, but if we have had any problems, it was very minor. I think it is a win-win for everybody.”
Squeeze the last bit of summer freshness as we wind down to fall with ANUK keeping an eye on the radar.