Onions

FruitGard® provides excellent post-harvest control of decay in both sweet or pungent types of onions. FruitGard is usually applied while onions are held in storage, or during transit after removal from storage. FruitGard is a dry gas so it penetrates the pile of onions and kills microorganisms without adding moisture to the stored bulbs. Application requires no modification of existing storage facilities.

The spectrum of activity of FruitGard against onion decay organisms is broad. It includes:
Bacterial soft rot.
FruitGard eliminates the causal bacteria from wounds contaminated in the field or during harvesting. FruitGard is effective a low rates because it circulates around the onions as a dry gas which condenses in moisture rich environments such as wounds.

Black mold and blue mold.
FruitGard is very effective against Aspergillus and Pennicillium species. In addition, it provides protection of healthy bulbs that may have been harvest before they completely cured.

Botrytis
Botrytis is very well controlled by FruitGard on sweet types; data do not yet exist on pungent types. One of the strengths of FruitGard application equipment (drums) is that they also functions as air scrubbers and remove and kill fungal spores from the air. This mode of action helps to reduce secondary spread of spore-borne diseases such as Botrytis.

Listeria and Salmonella
Human pathogens (e.g. Listeria and Salmonella) are controlled by FruitGard applied to onions that will be used in processing plants. This regulatory approval for FruitGard in processing environments is covered by a FDA Food Contact Notification (FCN000949).

The data base on other diseases is under development.

  • Basal rot. This disease is caused by Fusarium infecting the bulbs in the field. Infected bulbs may show no decay at harvest, but may rot in storage. FruitGard provides excellent control of Fusarium in stored potatoes, but efficacy against this fungus on stored onions is unknown.
  • Yeast soft rot. This disease is spread by insects in storage. Although efficacy data on this disease does not yet exist; there is reason to expect that FruitGard will be effective against the causal organism and it may also indirectly reduce the disease by eliminating the insects that spread the pathogen. Insects find low doses of FruitGard to be irritating and consequently they do not enter or remain in storage environments.