Good Fruit Grower

November 2015

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6 NOVEMBER 2015 GOOD FRUIT GROWER Honeycrisp disappoints A s a resident of central Ohio, I've celebrated the Honeycrisp apple ever since I "discovered" it several years ago. However, a deterioration in quality has definitely occurred, at least in the commercial grocery chains here. Where the original Honeycrisp had a very thin and shiny red and green skin, the varieties now in the produce sections exhibit relatively thick, tough, and dull skins with an increased yellow tone. Where the flesh of the original Honeycrisp was light and extremely juicy, the varieties now in the produce sections present coarsely textured flesh of ordinary moisture. Needless to say, the distinctive original Honeycrisp flavor has been compromised as well. Before reading your article ("Honeycrisp: Don't kill the golden goose," February 1, 2014 issue), I had attributed these problematic apples to simply being poorly stored older fruit, but now it appears they are merely improperly grown fruit. Quite the difference and quite frustrating. What to do? At least at this point, I'm able to easily spot (and leave behind) the "pretenders" without ever taking a bite! Jim Frasca Columbus, Ohio Remembering Richard Lehnert D ear Good Fruit Grower: I was sorry to hear the sad news of Dick Lehnert's passing. I spoke to Dick many times, both for stories he was pursuing and in informal chats. In private, Dick had very clear, well-thought out views on many subjects, but he never let those interfere with his focus on the current story. His unique contributions to the horticultural industry will be missed. Sincerely, Des O'Rourke Pullman, Washington IN THE BOX Write us at 105 S. 18th Street, #217, Yakima, WA 98901 or email Growers tout crunch T he New York Apple Growers Association, which is commercializing new apple varieties released by Cornell University's breeding program, has changed its name to Crunch Time Apple Growers. Manager Robin Leous said the group's original name was too similar to the New York Apple Association and New York Apple Sales. "There was a lot of confusion among those in the industry about who we are and what we do," Leous said. "There was even confusion among our members." The name Crunch Time was selected because the crunchiness will be a key attri- bute of all varieties that the association man- ages, she said. About 145 of New York's apple growers have joined the association in order to be able to grow the new apple varieties, which are only available to growers in New York. Cornell has developed more than 60 apple varieties in the past century, but SnapDragon (cultivar NY1) and RubyFrost (NY2) are its first managed varieties. SnapDragon (a cross of Honeycrisp and an advanced New York selection) is a red apple with sweet, crisp, and juicy flesh. It matures in late September to early October in New York. RubyFrost (a cross of Braeburn and Autumn Crisp) has a more tart flavor and high vitamin C content and is suitable for both fresh eating and baking. It matures in mid- to late October. Leous said increasing volumes of the two apples are coming to market. The first trees were planted in 2011. Plantings will be limited to 1,000 acres, and the last trees will go in the ground next year. The plantings won't be in full production until 2022. About 60 percent of the acreage will be SnapDragon, but RubyFrost is a more pro- lific apple, so production of the two varieties will be about the same. So far, East Coast retailers are handling most of the production. Leous said marketing efforts will expand geographically as greater volumes become available. —G. Warner COURTESY ROBIN LEOUS, CRUNCH TIME APPLE GROWERS RubyFrost—a cross between Braeburn and Autumn Crisp—is one of the first managed varieties developed by Cornell University. 800.253.4737 • Antigo, WI • • Idaho Falls, ID Pasco, WA Fresno, CA • Volm is an industry leader in flexographic printing, laminating, and converting film into premade pouches. Volm offers many options in size, material, format and features to create a package that is sure to increase the presence of your product on the shelf, including the new Half-N-Half Pouch. ® Call Volm to learn more about our products and how we're bringing fresh produce from packing facility to market shelf. World-Class Packaging... © 2015 Volm Companies, Inc. Half-N-Half Pouch ® ... Automated Solutions Move away from manual pouch filling with the Volmpack Kangaroo Pouch Bagger, available in a single and dual version. Simple to use and compact, the Kangaroo provides high speed bagging and sealing for common pouch style bags. ® Volmpack Kangaroo ® Pouch Bagger COMPANIES - your total solutions partner.

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