Nutraceutícal quality of cantaloupe melon fruits produced under fertilization wíth organíc nutríent Solutions
Rueda Puente,Edgar O
Consumption of fruits and vegetables provides natural antioxidants in the human diet that are capable of preventing diseases resulting from the action of free radicals. The aim of the current study was to evaluate the effect of organic nutrient solutions on the nutraceutical quality of hydroponic cantaloupe melon (Cucumis melo L.) produced under greenhouse conditions. The applied organic solutions consisted of compost and vermicompost teas and vermicompost leachate, while Steiner nutrient solution was used as a control. Analytical tests were run to determine the antioxidant capacity and total phenolic content of the melon fruits. The nutraceutical quality (antioxidant capacity and phenolic content) of the fruits fertilized with the organic solutions was higher than that of melons fertilized using Steiner solution. Treatment with vermicompost leachate led to the highest antioxidant capacity and phenolic content among all of the treatments, resulting a 46.1% higher in antioxidant capacity (DPPH+ method) and a 29.3% higher phenolic content compared with inorganically fertilized fruits. Vermicompost solutions (leachate and tea) are viable alternatives for use as a nutrient source in the production of hydroponic cantaloupe melon with improved nutraceutical quality under greenhouse conditions.