Postharvest Biology, Quality, Safety, and Technology

A section of Horticulturae (ISSN 2311-7524).

Section Information

The knowledge of postharvest physiology and pathology helps to understand the basic biological changes and underlying mechanisms that occur in a detached fresh or fresh-cut organ from the moment of harvest until it is consumed, whether fresh, fresh-cut, or cooked. This may take a few days or up to one year; regardless, the fresh or fresh-cut produce should maintain its external, internal, and sensorial quality. Postharvest technology is used to manage the harvesting, handling, storage, and marketing conditions that lead to extended shelf life and better quality of harvested produce.

Despite the remarkable progress in increasing food production worldwide, approximately half of the population in developing countries does not have access to adequate food supply. Thus, the food safety and security problem is worsening. Plants or plant parts continue to function metabolically after harvest and are subjected to physiological, pathological, biochemical, and sensorial deterioration and loss. The magnitude of postharvest losses in fresh and fresh-cut produce is estimated to be 5% to 25% in developed countries and 25% to 50% in developing countries. This enormous waste of fresh food poses a significant economic, social, and ecological challenge for humanity, indicating the need to improve current practices to understand and develop new means to reduce this loss. Technological advances—like the online monitoring of the environment and the produce state, or the active modulation of storage conditions, in parallel with increased public awareness of food quality and safety—introduce both opportunities as well as challenges to the field.

In the Postharvest Biology, Quality, Safety, and Technology Section, we welcome original manuscripts of diverse types concerning recent insights, approaches, and advances in the pre- and postharvest harvesting, handling, and marketing of perishable fresh produce aiming to preserve its quality and reduce losses during prolonged storage and shelf life. We also welcome innovative applied research aiming to maintain fresh produce quality.

In particular, Postharvest Biology, Quality, Safety, and Technology welcomes contributions by early career researchers and propositions for research topics. In addition, we invite senior scientists to initiate and serve as Guest Editors of new Special Issues on a single and particular theme.


  • ripening
  • senescence
  • deterioration
  • ethylene
  • respiration
  • cold storage
  • controlled atmosphere storage
  • aroma volatiles

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