American Potato Journal

, Volume 58, Issue 1, pp 71–80 | Cite as

Growth and preharvest stress and processing quality of potatoes

  • W. M. Iritani


The quality factors influenced by stress conditions are: total dry matter or starch content and distribution of starch, sugar content, types of sugars and distribution, texture, mealiness, flesh color, tuber size and shape, and tuber defects such as growth cracks, and hollow heart.

Early stress during growth can cause tubers to become pointed on the stem-end with low starch content and high reducing sugars. Uneven growth due to stress results in growth cracks, or hollow heart and malformed tubers. Varieties differ considerably as to susceptibility. Stress generally causes lower starch content in tubers which results in greater sugar accumulation in storage. Relative maturity is also influenced by stress during growth. Immature and over-mature tubers (from prematurely dead plants) accumulate greater amounts of sugar in storage than tubers properly matured.

Stress can also cause poor texture of processed products, such as tough texture of French fries as well as lack of mealiness. Flavor and color of processed products can also be detrimentally influenced by stress.

Key words

Stress processing quality sugars starch content texture shape maturity 


Los factores de calidad influenciados por condiciones de stress son: contenido total de materia seca o de almidón y su distribución, contenido de azúcar, tipos de azúcares y su distribución, textura, harinosidad, color de la pulpa, tomaño y forma del tubérculo y malformaciones del tubérculo, tales como rajaduras y corazón vacío.

Stress hídricos en los primeros estados de desarrollo de la planta pueden causar tubérculos alargados con bajos contenidos de almidón y alto contenido de azúcares reductores. Desarrollo anormal debido a stress hídrico causa rajaduras, corazón vacío o tubérculos malformados. Las variedades difieren considerablemente en susceptibilidad. Stress hídricos generalmente producen tubérculos con bajos contenidos de almidón, lo cual resulta en una mayor acumulación de azúcares durante el almacenamiento. Stress hídricos durante el desarrollo influyen tambien sobre la madurez relativa. Tubérculos inmaduros o sobre maduros, provenientes de plantas muertas prematuramente, acumulan mayores cantidades de azúcar durante el almacenamiento que aquellos tubérculos que maduran apropiadamente.

Stress hídricos también pueden causar una mala textura en los productos procesados, tales como: fuerte textura en papas fritas, o carentes de harinosidad. Stress hídricos también pueden causar detrimento en el sabor y color de productos procesados.


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Copyright information

© Springer 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. M. Iritani
    • 1
  1. 1.Washington State UniversityPullman

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