I talked about this over the past fifteen years with many fruit lovers. When we gas, we simply use natures physical properties and convert the chemicals into solids so we can control the maturing processes.
The more natural way in ancient Egyptians was to gash figs in order to stimulate ripening. The wounding should stimulate ethylene production to help ripening.The ancient Chinese would burn incense in closed rooms to enhance the ripening of pears.
Ethylene gas is used commercially to ripen tomatoes, bananas, pears, and other fruits post-harvest. Ethylene changes texture, softening, color, and other processes involved in ripening. I am not satisfied to eat fruits that are “gassed” even though it we sometimes have little choice. The problem is not the gas, it is post harvesting and the uses of fungicides and antioxidants.