What happens to a blueberry to make it change from plump and firm to mushy and collapsed when stored in the refrigerator? What causes this to happen to only “isolated” blueberries?



Whenever I buy blueberries, they always start off looking great, and after a few days usually a few of them will have completely transformed to mush. Most of the others don’t seem to be affected. What is happening to the ones that get mushy, and why does it seem “isolated”?

In: Biology

It’s because of the moisture in the fridge, causing firm substances in the fruit to dissolve into water-soluble chemicals. It happens to all fruits and vegetables to a certain extent (ever noticed how a lettuce wilts when you store it in the fridge?) but you might notice it more in blueberries since they’re smaller, have tender flesh with high water content, and thin skin. The reason why it seems to happen more to isolated berries is because more of the fruits’ surface area is exposed to the moisture, accelerating the rate at which they go soft.