Respiration and factors affecting respiration rate

factors affecting respiration

In this topic we are going to explain about factors affecting respiration in detail


  • Is the process by which stores fruits and vegetable or food materials (Carbohydrates, Protein, fats) are broken down into simple end products with a release of energy.
  • It is also involves degradation of food reserves, especially sugars, in order to produce chemical energy (in the form of ATP and NADH) needed to maintain cellular metabolic activity.
  • Respiration and metabolism Vegetables are living commodities and continue to respire even after harvest.
  • Respiration uses the stored food, leading to its depletion and consequently the loss of quality.
  • Hence, storage life of vegetables is influenced by rate of respiration and is associated with biochemical activity.¬†

Agri Exam Important 10000 Agriculture MCQ

Factors Affecting Respiration rate

A. Internal Factors affecting respiration

1. Stage of Development: During organ development the rate of respiration variation occurs. When fruits become bulky i.e at maturation stage degree of respiration rate decreases as compared to initial development stage. In Climacteric fruit the rate of respiration is minimum at maturity stage but when ripening is about to start after harvest the respiration rate will increase to climacteric peak.

2. Moisture Content: If the moisture is more, respiration is less because of dimension of sugar content. Transpiration is more water loss is more so concentration of sugar is more which less to higher respiration rate. More water loss lead to desiccation rather than more accumulation of sugar.

3. Sugar of Fruit: Small sized fruits have more expose surface compared to bulky fruits. So respiration rate is more in small fruits.

4. Coating on Surface of Fruits: More thickness of coating less the respiration rate. 5. Type of Tissue: Young tissues have more respiration rate.

B. External Factors affecting respiration

1. Temperature: the chemical reaction goes faster at a higher temperature, though, when the temperature is too hot, enzymes will break down and respiration will stop.

2. Oxygen concentration: The reaction needs oxygen, so if there is no oxygen, no respiration occurs. In general, less oxygen leads to a slower reaction rate.

3. Carbon dioxide concentration: The influence of carbon dioxide concentration depends strongly on the fruit or vegetable. Some might increase in respiration rate, whereas with others more carbon dioxide might lead to slower reactions.

4. Stress in a vegetable: Yes, vegetables can be stressed, for instance if they are cut or damaged. This will initiate all sorts of reactions, including those that accelerate respiration.

5. Ripening: Some fruits (and vegetables) continue to ripe after they have been harvested (climacteric fruits). During ripening the respiration rate might increase or decrease, depending on the product. This can also be linked with ethylene concentrations.

6. Fruit Injury: This mechanical injury is also responsible for stimulating respiration rate.

7. Ethylene: Application of ethylene can shift the time as to reach climacteric peak.

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