Effect of Harvesting Date and Variety of Date Palm on Antioxidant Capacity, Phenolic and Flavonoid Content of Date Palm (Phoenix Dactylifera)
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The effect of date palm variety and harvesting date on total phenolic content, total flavonoid content, and antioxidant capacity of seven varieties of date palm fruits collected at different maturation stages obtained from date palm farms located in the Jericho area of the Jordan valley was investigated in this study. During different harvesting times (from June to September 2011), total phenolic content, total flavonoid content, and antioxidant capacity varied between 13.75-231.40 mg gallic acid equivalents (GAE), 1.72-9.6 mg catechin equivalents, and 142.0-719.3 μmol Trolox equivalents per 100 g dry weight sample for the seven varieties of date palm, respectively. Pearson correlation indicated that there is a strong significant correlation between antioxidant capacity and total phenolic content, as well as between antioxidant capacity and total flavonoid content for all date palm varieties investigated in this study. It is expected that these results will be useful to farmers particularly in their selection of harvesting time of the date palm fruits with high content of the bioactive compounds to meet the increasing demand on such healthy products.