The chitosan-based coating with antimicrobial agent has been developed recently to control the decay of fruits. However, its fresh keeping and antimicrobial mechanism is still not very clear. The preservation mechanism of chitosan coating with cinnamon oil for fruits storage is investigated in this paper. Results in the atomic force microscopy sensor images show that many micropores exist in the chitosan coating film. The roughness of coating film is affected by the concentration of chitosan. The antifungal activity of cinnamon oil should be mainly due to its main consistent trans-cinnamaldehyde, which is proportional to the trans-cinnamaldehyde concentration and improves with increasing the attachment time of oil. The exosmosis ratios of Penicillium citrinum
and Aspergillus flavus
could be enhanced by increasing the concentration of cinnamon oil. Morphological observation indicates that, compared to the normal cell, the wizened mycelium of A. flavus
is observed around the inhibition zone, and the growth of spores is also inhibited. Moreover, the analysis of gas sensors indicate that the chitosan-oil coating could decrease the level of O2
and increase the level of CO2
in the package of cherry fruits, which also control the fruit decay. These results indicate that its preservation mechanism might be partly due to the micropores structure of coating film as a barrier for gas and a carrier for oil, and partly due to the activity of cinnamon oil on the cell disruption.
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