When Apple (and other) Trees Bloom

The arrival of spring in the northern hemisphere can be a moving target. Too early and frost can be a risk factor, while a late spring can push the growing season. Whenever it arrives, fruit tree blossoms are always a welcome sight. Most of us look at an orchard and see a blanket of beautiful flowers. To the untrained eye it can be hard to differentiate the blooms of apricots from those of an apple or peach. Lucky for you, we can help. For those in the pacific northwest, here’s a guide to what fruit trees are blooming when. Fruit
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The Story of ApBitz™ Apple Snacks

There has never been a more interesting time than now to grow food. Technology provides farmers with tools to better manage risk and science offers possibilities to help answer challenges faced around the world. In the conversation of ‘how do we feed ourselves’, even us apple growers can heed the call. Apples are one of the most wasted foods in the fresh food supply chain, with up to 40% not making it to store shelves. Our nonbrowning Arctic® apples are one solution in finding a way to help reduce this number. What happens to apples that don’t make our fresh
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Modern Apple Growing

Science and technology are advancing at a rapid pace, making life easier and more convenient. Agriculture sees its share of these benefits but the true advantage is realized when we can find our way to a place where old and new meet in harmony. Apple growing has changed. Sprawling trees have been replaced by smaller, more productive ones in high-density orchards. Gone is water-wasting overhead irrigation in favor of more efficient drip systems. Through it all, a few things remain the same – sometimes getting a helping hand. Grafted, not seeded Apple seeds are a genetically creative group. If planted,
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An Arctic®Hat Trick: golden, granny, and FUJI

Just recently we received approval from Canadian government regulatory authorities for another apple variety: the Arctic® Fuji. This means we now have three apples in the Arctic® family – which in hockey terms would be a hat trick. (we had to say it) With our fall 2017 inaugural launch of Arctic® Golden packaged slices in a handful of US locations we saw good response to our fresh packaged fruit. And since our Arctic® Fuji already has USDA approval, we thought it time to review how and when which Arctic® apple varieties will get from our house to yours. Because this
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The Cellular Kitchen: science and sustainable food

Over the last two decades technology has advanced at a brisk pace. But tech is not the only place of rapid growth and development. Together, science and tech have a significant role in changing conversations around food and sustainability. We talked earlier about what it means to be sustainable. Aside from having recycling bins and a garden compost, sustainability for us includes looking for ways to mindfully grow the food supply while reducing food waste. Innovating. This is where science comes in. As an orchardist and bioresource engineer, Neal’s natural place to start was with apples. Arctic® apples answered a
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2018: To a Sustainable and Healthy Planet

The start of a new year can bring with it a refocus on goals and a revisit of what’s important. Here at Okanagan Specialty Fruits Ltd. (OSF), one of our guiding principles is keeping true to our roots as we grow sustainable new ways of reducing food waste. What does being sustainable look like? From orchard irrigation to packaging choices, our commitment to a healthy earth is in every aspect of our work – starting with a simple apple. Nonbrowning Arctic® apples When Neal and Louisa began OSF in 1996, they started looking beyond the orchard and down the food
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Welcoming the newest members of our science team

We are excited to introduce you to our newest members of the science team! Aruna Wickramarathna joined us as an Assistant Scientist in November, and Jordan Hannah became our lab technician earlier this month. Aruna is our man with the plan when it comes to applying advanced technology to improve tree fruits. Aruna grew up in Sri Lanka before moving to Canada in the middle of winter for post graduate studies; he describes the 28⁰C change in temperature as a shock, to say the least! He has worked in molecular biology for 13 years and loves that science gives him
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Dr Christine Rosenbloom shares her thoughts on GM foods

These days, there are lots of different opinions about food, and all these ideas can make for a confusing trip to the grocery store! Dr Christine Rosenbloom often sees this first hand, so she wrote a blog about what she as a Dietician wishes her friends knew about GM foods. Dr Christine Rosenbloom is a nutrition professor emerita at Georgia State University. She has a PhD, is a Registered Dietician and a Certified Specialist in Sport Dietetics. You can contact and learn more about Chris on her blog, Twitter and Facebook.   Her latest post explores important points such as:
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What do consumers think about biotech & the Arctic® apple?

This educational webinar by Jennifer Armen, hosted by the Produce for Better Health Foundation, is based on recent qualitative and quantitative consumer research. Jennifer shares current perceptions of biotech and Arctic® apples, what it takes to gain consumer acceptance, and why benefits are an important part of the discussion when it comes to helpful applications of biotechnology. Jennifer also answers questions, and explains how Arctic® apples are able to better maintain their natural color when sliced, bruised or bitten! Click here for the presentation audio and slides…
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OSF’s Neal Carter interviewed on “Talking Biotech” Podcast

When you tune in to the excellent podcast series “Talking Biotech” you’ll hear each episode open with the following quotes, and they provide a strong case for why this podcast is so important: “I want to see science serve a useful purpose to improve the standard of living for allpeople.” (Norman Borlaug) “Why is anyone fighting food advance? A very small percentage of the world’s population is fortunate enough to have the luxury of turning down food.” (Penn Jillette) “We have arranged a society based on science and technology in which nobody understands anything about science and technology.” (Carl Sagan) The
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