Written by  Russell Fox

Reduce cherry cracking & improve quality with Parka+

Cherry cracking can be devastating. The day before harvest everything looks beautiful; then it rains and the entire crop can be ruined.

A new product developed by researchers at Oregon State University (OSU) prevents and lessens the risk of cherry cracking.
Parka+ is an elastic, water-repelling biofilm that is a cuticle supplement. It contains only food-based products and expands as the fruit grows.
Parka+ is a novel elastic hydrophobic biofilm that stretches with fruit growth. The technology behind Parka is a proprietary mix of natural chemicals similar to those found in the outer skins of cherries. Its main ingredients are cellulose, specialised vegetable wax and calcium.
When Parka+ is sprayed onto the fruit, the water expresses from the emulsion and a thin hydrophobic biofilm is left behind to protect the fruit against the damaging effects of water droplets from rain.
Two applications, one at straw colour and another 10 days later gives the fruit cuticle protection through to harvest.
Parka+ does not protect against long, sustained rains where cherry cracking comes from an excess of internal water uptake through the roots.  What Parka+ does protect against is water brought in through the surface of the fruit.
Parka+ has been proven to be effective in reducing fruit cracking by up to 50%.

For more information and contact details see Tree Fruit Oct 2015