European Food Research and Technology

, Volume 243, Issue 9, pp 1519–1531 | Cite as

Polyphenols and aromatic volatile compounds in biodynamic and conventional ‘Golden Delicious’ apples (Malus domestica Bork.)

  • Elisa MasiEmail author
  • Cosimo Taiti
  • Pamela Vignolini
  • Antonio William Petrucci
  • Edgardo Giordani
  • Daniela Heimler
  • Annalisa Romani
  • Stefano Mancuso
Original Paper


Biodynamic and conventional apples of the cultivar ‘Golden Delicious’ were characterized based on the investigation of polyphenol content and volatile composition. Polyphenols were determined by high-performance liquid chromatography with diode-array detection and mass spectrometry HPLC/DAD/MS analysis; volatile organic compounds (VOCs) were detected with a proton transfer-time of flight-mass spectrometer (PTR-ToF-MS) approach. Colour and physiochemical fruit parameters were also acquired to compare fruit ripeness. By the analysis of the entire data set, it emerges that polyphenols can separate samples both on geographic and agricultural management basis, according to PCA analysis. On the contrary, PCA on volatile compounds is unable to separate the samples. Results suggest that, in apple fruits, polyphenols content is highly influenced by external factors, while volatile profile is under a stronger genetic control, thus more stable across different environments.


Farming system HPLC/DAD/MS Malus domestica Bork. Secondary metabolites PTR-ToF-MS VOCs 



We gratefully acknowledge the apples producers Mr. Alexius Terzer (Bolzano, Trentino Alto Adige) and Mr. Mario Tonioni (La Coccinella di Alberoro, Arezzo, Tuscany), and Dr. Laura Isolani for her technical support. This study was supported by funds of the Regione Toscana ‘‘PRAF 2012–2015 MISURA 1.2 e)’’ program (call “Agrifood”, project VOLATOSCA).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elisa Masi
    • 1
  • Cosimo Taiti
    • 1
  • Pamela Vignolini
    • 2
  • Antonio William Petrucci
    • 1
  • Edgardo Giordani
    • 1
  • Daniela Heimler
    • 1
  • Annalisa Romani
    • 2
  • Stefano Mancuso
    • 1
  1. 1.Dipartimento di Scienze delle Produzioni Agroalimentari e dell’Ambiente (DISPAA)Università di FirenzeFlorenceItaly
  2. 2.Dipartimento di Statistica, Informatica, Applicazioni “G. Parenti” (DISIA)University of FlorenceFlorenceItaly

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