Evaluation of Phenolic Content and Antioxidant Capacity of Blueberry Cultivars (Vaccinium corymbosum L.) Grown in the Northwest Croatia

Verica Dragović-Uzelac1*, Zvonimir Savić2, Ana Brala1, Branka Levaj1, Danijela Bursać Kovačević1 and Ante Biško2

Faculty of Food Technology and Biotechnology, University of Zagreb, Pierottijeva 6, HR-10000 Zagreb, Croatia

2Croatian Centre for Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, Jandrićeva 42, HR-10000 Zagreb, Croatia

Article history:

Received May 28, 2009
Accepted January 27, 2010

Key words:

blueberry, phenolics, antioxidant capacity, reducing power


The aim of this study is to evaluate the content of phenolics: total phenols (TPC), flavonoids (TF), anthocyanins (TA), flavan-3-ols (TF3ols), as well as total antioxidant capacity (TAC) and reducing power (RP) in four blueberry cultivars (Vaccinium corymbosum L.) introduced in the Northwest Croatian climate conditions. Phenolic compounds were measured by spectrophotometric methods, TAC was determined using DPPH and ABTS assays and RP by FRAP assay. All cultivars contained high mass fraction of TPC, TF, TA and lower mass fraction of TF3ols. Among the researched fruits, Sierra cultivar contained the highest amounts of all groups of phenolics, followed by Elliott>Bluecrop³Duke. Significant differences were observed in phenolic mass fraction among different cultivars and growing seasons (p<0.05), and phenolic compounds were significantly higher in growing season 2006. Examined cultivars possess high antioxidant capacity and reducing power, and all phenolics were highly correlated with TAC and RP (R=0.46 to 0.99). The study indicated that growing and climate conditions in Northwest Croatia are convenient for introducing blueberry cultivars. Generally, blueberry fruits are a rich source of phenolics, which show evident antioxidant capacity.


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