What is the desired transit and storage temperatures of endive-escarole-chicory?

Desired transit temperature 33 to 36F. These leafy vegetables are similar to lettuce and are handled somewhat similarly. Because they are very perishable and have a high respiration rate, prompt refrigeration after harvesting is required. Hydrocooling is the usual commercial practice, followed by top icing and bunker ice. However, vacuum cooling can also be effectively used. Transit decays are similar to those of lettuce.

Endive or escarole is not adapted to long storage under commercial conditions. Even at 32F, which is considered to be the best storage temperature, it cannot be expected to keep satisfactorily for more than 2 or 3 weeks. The storage requirements for endive are practically the same as for lettuce. Like lettuce, it should keep somewhat longer than the period mentioned if it is stored with cracked ice in or around the packages. The relative humidity in rooms where endive is help should be kept at 90 to95% to prevent wilting. A certain amount of desirable blanching usually occurs in endive that is held in storage.

Excerpted from Seelig, R.A. 1964September. Fruit and Vegetable Facts and Pointers: Endive-Escarole-Chicory. United Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Association, 777 14th St., NW, Washington, DC 2005

Updated: Wednesday, May 23, 2012.