The objective of this work was to evaluate chemical and physicochemical characteristics of fruits of 12 west indian cherry (Malpighia punicifolia L.) genotypes undergoing a selection process at Embrapa Cassava and Fruit Crops, aiming to identify those with high vitamin C content and total soluble solids (TSS)/total titratable acidity (TTA) ratio. Fruits were harvested at the half mature stage in the September/October harvest, in 1997 and 1998. The results showed values ranging from 835 to 1,820 mg of ascorbic acid per 100 g of pulp, 6.0 to 11.6% for the TSS, 0.69 to 1.65% for the TTA, 4,24 to 11,59 for the TSS/TTA ratio and 3.08 to 3.57 for the pH. Among the genotypes studied, CMF022 and CMF019 presented the highest vitamin C content and the lowest TSS/TTA ratio, whereas CMF015, CMF008 and CMF010 had the highest TSS/TTA ratio, in 1997 and 1998.
West Indian cherry; vitamin C; post-harvest