My Peach Is Brown Inside: Is It Safe To Eat?

People who have bitten into or cut open a peach, only to discover a brown patch of mushy flesh inside the fruit, will know how annoying and disappointing this is. If you’ve ever been in this situation, you might be wondering why is my peach brown inside?

Peaches often turn brown on the inside if they have been stored in a cold spot before they ripen. This causes internal damage to the fruit, making the cells inside the fruit break down, and resulting in browning in the middle.

Other things can also cause internal browning, but this is the most common, so let’s look at it in a little more detail to understand what’s going on.

Why Is My Peach Brown Inside?

peach

Peaches can turn brown inside for a couple of reasons, but if you’ve cut into a firm, perfect peach and found an unexpected brown spot in the middle, it’s likely because the peach was chilled before it was ripened.

Very often, foods like peaches are picked while unripe and then stored in the cold before they are transported to stores and supermarkets around the country. This is done because it keeps the peach unripe for longer.

When the peach is ready to be put onto the shelves, it will be allowed to warm up and ripen, ready for consumers to purchase and enjoy. Sometimes peaches on the shelves will still be unripe, sold as “ripen at home.”

This makes it much easier to avoid food waste because ripe peaches are at risk of rotting before they even reach the store, so it’s best to pick them up early. However, recent studies have shown that picking them too early and then leaving them in a cold location can cause the internal flesh to break down and start browning.

Why Does The Flesh Turn Brown?

Browning inside a fruit usually occurs because the walls of the fruit’s cells are starting to break down. This causes compounds from the cells to be released, and these compounds interact with each other – which often results in a brown color forming.

The color spreads in the area that was affected, creating a bruised appearance on the flesh even though it has never been struck. Internal breakdown can affect any part of the peach and spoils the flavor and texture.

You will not be able to see signs of internal breakdown on the outside of the peach; the skin can look absolutely perfect, even when the inner parts have gone mushy and brown. Occasionally, there will be a slight softness to indicate that part of the fruit has been damaged, but often, you can’t tell until you cut into it and see the brown.

What Else Causes It To Be Brown Inside?

Occasionally, the inside of the peach may have been damaged by being struck or jostled, either on the tree or during the picking process, and this can also cause internal browning.

However, this sort of damage will often show on the skin as well, because the skin is the first part that will have been struck, so the bruise will run from this point and into the rest of the fruit. It is possible to have an internal bruise without the skin showing any signs of it, but this is quite rare.

Is The Brown Part Safe To Eat?

The brown part of the peach should be safe to eat, but it may not be very nice. Peaches that have been picked early and kept in the cold often lack some of the sweetness and crispiness of a fresh peach, and you might find that you can’t really enjoy the fruit as a result. However, it will not be harmful.

Although brown coloring and mushiness often indicate decay in fruit (which would mean mold and bacteria), this will not usually be present just as a result of internal breakdown. Nothing has penetrated the fruit’s flesh and therefore there is little risk of a bacterial or fungal infection.

The fruit is simply damaged, not decaying, and therefore it will not hurt you – but it often doesn’t make for a very pleasant mouthful regardless, because it is mushy and will lack flavor. The reacting compounds may have produced an odd taste, and the texture certainly will not be good.

Can I Eat The Rest Of The Peach?

Most people will simply cut the bad part out of the peach and then enjoy the rest of the fruit, and it is perfectly safe to do this. All you need to do is take a sharp knife and cut away the flesh that has turned brown, plus a little flesh in the surrounding area that may have been affected.

You can then safely enjoy the rest of the peach as normal, without the mushy part. You can also cook with it if you choose to, but this is not necessary, because there shouldn’t be any bacteria that you need to kill with high temperatures.

When raw, fruits are surprisingly resistant to decay as long as their skins are intact; the skin serves to keep out all sorts of unpleasant things because it is trying to preserve the fruit and the seeds. Remember, a raw fruit is designed to last and still has plenty of living tissue that will keep it safe to eat for as long as possible.

Since fruits tend to be expensive and you may not want to unnecessarily throw away a peach that has traveled around the world and been refrigerated just to reach you, it’s a good idea to eat the remaining parts of this fruit, even if there is a mushy, brown part in the middle.

Conclusion

Peaches unfortunately suffer from something called internal breakdown when they are stored, unripe, in cold conditions for too long. The cell walls on the inside of the fruit will be damaged, releasing compounds that create a brown stain and mushy texture on the inside of the fruit. This is not good to eat, but the rest of the fruit will be fine.

Alexandre Valente

Hey there! My name is Alex and I've been vegan for more than five years! I've set up this blog because I'm really passionate about veganism and living a more eco-conscious life. Hopefully, I can use this website as a channel to help you out on your own journey!

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