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The New Cosmic Crisp Apple

10 months, 3 weeks ago

6325  0
Posted on Dec 03, 2019, 2 p.m.

A new variety of fruit has entered the American food market, one that took more than two decades to develop and can allegedly last for up to a year in the fridge…..

The apple was just launch, and no it is not technology or plastic, it is classed as a fruit. The Cosmic Crisp apple in now on sale in America which got the name because of the bright yellowish dots on the apple’s skin which resemble distant stars.

Launch of the Cosmic Crisp apple cost $10.5 million. Two thirds of the apples produced in America come from the state of Washington, and this crop will be no exception as those farmers have the exclusive right to grow this variety for the next 10 years; the Cosmic Crisp apple trees can take up to three years to yield a crop. 

Aaron Clark whose family owns several orchards and has planted 80 acres of the new variety says, "I've never seen an apple prettier in the orchard than these things are."

Spokesperson for the Washington Apple Commission, Toni Lynn Adams, that markets apples internationally says, "A new apple brings excitement. A new variety can reinvigorate a market and industry."

Kate Evans of Washington State University, co-led of the breeding program says that the work developing the apple variety began in 1997. "It's ultra-crisp, very juicy and has a good balance of sweetness and tartness." The Cosmic Crisp apple "...maintains excellent eating quality in refrigerated storage - easily for 10 to 12 months.The goal, in my opinion, is to get more consumers eating apples," she said. “Ultimately that is the goal of any plant breeder."

Over two decades after horticulturist Bruce Barritt took pollen from a Honeycrisp tree and placed in on the stigma of the Enterprise to produce seed the Cosmic Crisp hybrid apple hits the produce department in groceries nationwide in December 2019; it is worth noting that waiting for the trees to mature took up the vast part of the time. 

“This apple,” Barritt said, “was developed to make consumers happy.” According to Barritt, picking a winning apple involves the slow accumulation of data. “The experience of an apple is five things,” he said. “Two are about flavor, including sugar and acid content, and the different preferences people have—such as those who like sweet and those who like tangy. However, everyone likes crisp and juicy, and nobody likes soft.”

The Cosmic Crisp apple is one of the first apples to be bred in Washington state, and according to the release it is NOT genetically modified. This apple has a high sugar content and even higher acidity to help to keep its taste for a long time, and in a controlled atmosphere storage the crunch can last into the next harvest. This apple ripens more uniformly and browns slowly, because it can stay fresh for so long in proper storage there is also less waste. As a bonus this apple can be sold year round rather than seasonally, helping to keep the labor force employed.

Only 450,000 forty pound boxes will be available for sale this year, but in 2020 this will increase to over 2 million. Washington state produces 140-160 million boxes of all types of apples each year, growing 60% of all the apples sold in America making over $6 billion in an economic impact for the state. These apples could dramatically increase this by moving sales from seasonal to year long. 

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