Addressing common misconceptions of Arctic® orchards and fruit

During the recent U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) public comment period on Arctic® Granny and Arctic® Golden apples, a number of re-occurring misconceptions arose which are addressed in this blog. Agricultural biotechnology, which consumers are self-admittedly uniformed about, is a complicated subject. When there’s a new product that utilizes this technology, myths and incorrect information commonly follow. Biotechnology is a polarizing topic for many and unfortunately, this has led to a vocal minority propagating erroneous statements that mislead the general public.  Perhaps the most widely spread myth is that Arctic® apple orchards will cross-pollinate with organic orchards, causing them to
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A (Genetically-Modified) Apple a Day…

There has been significant media coverage on Arctic® Granny and Golden apples since the U.S. Department of Agriculture opened the 60-day comment period on OSF’s petition for deregulation July 13, 2012. Few of these articles are written by as well-credentialed authors as Henry Miller and Robert Wager, though.  Dr. Henry I. Miller, MS, MD served for fifteen years in the US Food and Drug Administration amongst numerous other positions relating to biotechnology and regulatory processes. Robert Wager has a BSc in microbiology, a master’s in biochemistry and has been heavily involved in educating the public on agricultural biotechnology for over
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Arctic® Apples: Good for the Consumer

Over the past few weeks, we have touched on how Arctic® apples benefit each link along the supply chain, explaining the unique value they offer to growers, packers, retailers, foodservice, freshcut processors, traditional processors and last but certainly not least, consumers! In many ways, consumers get the most value of all because they also enjoy the benefits previously discussed in each segment of the supply-chain. For example, because less fruit is wasted (culled) from the grower to retailers, higher volumes of better quality fruit reach consumers. Additionally, it’s great for freshcut processors that they can avoid using costly anti-browning solutions,
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Arctic® Apples: Good for Processors

When most people think of apples, they think of, well, an apple! However, over a third of apples grown in North America are processed into something other than a fresh apple. Chief among processed apple products is, not surprisingly, apple juice, which accounts over 40% of all processed apples. Processed apple products are becoming increasingly popular, with projected increases for juice and cider up 4%, canned up 11%, frozen up 29% and dried up 21%. Unfortunately, fresh sliced projections decreased, a topic explored in our last entry. The point is, there is a strong demand for processed apple products and
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USDA comment period on Arctic® apples comes to a close

Arctic® Grannies and Arctic® Goldens are both one step closer to market with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) concluding their 60-day comment period yesterday (September 11, 2012). Okanagan Specialty Fruit’s petition applying for the deregulation of our nonbrowning apples was released for public review and input on July 13 and the past two months have been a very exciting time for our small company! There has been a tremendous amount of attention from the media and even more from consumers, who submitted around three times the number of comments on the Arctic® apple petition as the nine other biotech crops undergoing
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Arctic® Apples: Good for Foodservice

People love apples! The food that keeps the doctor away is currently the second most consumed fruit in the U.S., even though apple consumption has been declining since the ‘80s. With apples being so popular and consumers increasingly eating food away from home, you might expect apples to be prevalent in the foodservice industry, but this simply isn’t the case. We often use baby carrots as a comparable to Arctic® apples, since they both offer consumers convenience and “snackability”. Convenience is the number one driver for many consumers when purchasing foods. And, the same is often true in foodservice.  Around 20%
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