Good Fruit Grower

April 15

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Page 46 of 55 GOOD FRUIT GROWER APRIL 15, 2014 47 Company commits to Modi F armington Fresh, a tree fruit grower and packer based in Stockton, California, has been granted the U.S. rights to grow and pack the new Italian apple variety Modi. Modi (cultivar CIVG198) is a red apple, with a hint of yellow, and has exceptional keeping quality. It was bred by the Consorzio Italiano Vivaisti, the company that also produced the Rubens and Isaaq apples. It is being produced in a number of countries around the world and marketed by members of the Modi Inter- national Project. Current global production is about 18,000 tons annually, coming primarily from Europe, Turkey, Serbia, Russia, Uruguay, and Australia. The North American International New Varieties Network—comprising C&O Nurs- ery, Pro Tree Nursery, Van Well Nursery, and Willow Drive Nursery—is the most recent partner in the Modi International Project. It has assigned the U.S. rights to Farmington Fresh, which has committed to planting at least 200 acres of the variety in California's Central Valley. The agreement allows the company to plant up to 600 acres. The fi rst trees will be planted next spring. Jack Snyder, president of C & O Nursery in Wenatchee, Washington, said the variety seems well suited to hot, dry climates and remains fi rm and fl avorful after months of storage. Farmington Fresh, which was one of the fi rst U.S. producers to sell fresh-sliced apples, saw the potential for marketing Modi both as a fresh apple and as a sliced prod- uct. The fl esh of the apple stays white when cut. Snyder said would be suitable for other value-added products also. The apple is being grown in 27 test sites around North America, and Snyder said the AINN hopes that one of the larger testers in Washington will seek a license to grow it commercially. Licensees pay a per-tree royalty and a production fee. "Because of its ability to be grown in hot, drier climates and its long keeping ability, and its color and its appearance, and even its eating quality, we think Modi might have some high potential," Snyder said. "It's going to be interesting to see how people in the United States react to it." The essential resource for growers. sign up for eFlash newsletter Scan the code with your smartphone or tablet or go to: eflash-signup

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