Arctic® Fuji Apple Receives Canadian Approval

Summerland, B.C., Canada – Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc.’s (OSF) third nonbrowning Arctic® apple variety, Arctic® Fuji, has been approved by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and Health Canada (HC). The CFIA and HC announced today that the Arctic® Fuji variety “did not pose a greater risk to human health than apples currently available on the Canadian market. In addition, Health Canada also concluded that the Arctic® Fuji apple would have no impact on allergies, and that there are no differences in the nutritional value of the Arctic® Fuji apple compared to other traditional apple varieties available for consumption”. Arctic® Fuji trees will join
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GMO communication (Part 1): The juice is worth the squeeze

Over fifteen years before the first nonbrowning Arctic® apple variety was even approved in the U.S. and Canada, my family and I received a rude awakening regarding how big a challenge we had gotten ourselves into. Activists angry about the development of GMO apples had hacked over 650 of our young apple trees down. These particular trees weren’t even genetically engineered, but the activists either didn’t realize or simply didn’t care! Being involved in agriculture for over three decades, I’ve learned to expect the unexpected from the weather, pests and even people. And, while I’m happy to say the attack
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Arctic® Fuji Gains USDA Approval

  Okanagan Specialty Fruits’ (OSF) third nonbrowning Arctic® apple variety, the Arctic® Fuji, has been granted deregulated status by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA APHIS).  Arctic® Fuji apples have been found to be as safe and nutritious as conventional apples, joining OSF’s Arctic® Golden and Arctic® Granny varieties. “The response to Arctic® Fuji apples and our overall platform to deliver direct benefits to consumers has been encouraging,” said Neal Carter, Okanagan Specialty Fruits’ founder and president.  “We are confident the positive feedback we have received will translate to the marketplace.” The approval follows
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Arctic® Fuji – another step closer

Arctic® Fuji apples are now one step closer to U.S. deregulation! Following the submission of our initial application to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Service (APHIS) requesting nonregulated status (commercial approval), we are excited to announce that OSF’s Arctic® Fuji petition  is now available to the public. This application contains data on the introduction and testing of the nonbrowning trait in Fuji variety apples which uses the same safe, beneficial technology as the Arctic® Granny and Arctic® Golden. This APHIS petition differs from the petition submitted for our initial varieties because it is considered an
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Press Release: Arctic® Fuji apple one step closer to U.S. regulatory approval

  Summerland, B.C., Canada – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has publicly shared the final version of Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc.’s (OSF) petition seeking regulatory approval for Arctic® Fuji apples, a nonbrowning variety produced through biotechnology. In an announcement published August 10, 2016, USDA APHIS stated that they have reached a preliminary decision to extend their determination of nonregulated status to OSF’s nonbrowning Arctic® Fuji variety. In addition to publishing OSF’s petition, APHIS has also shared their preliminary finding of no significant impact, and preliminary extended determination and plant pest risk assessment. USDA
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U.S. to deregulate Arctic® apples!

Okanagan Specialty Fruits is thrilled to share big news – the first nonbrowning Arctic® apple varieties are about to be deregulated in the United States! This milestone is nearly two decades in the making, as Arctic® Golden and Arctic® Granny apples represent OSF’s first products since our inception in 1996. We could not have achieved this without our small-but-mighty, grower-led team and all our supporters in the agriculture and biotech industries. And, of course, all the consumers who told us they can’t wait for nonbrowning apples! Earlier today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Services (APHIS)
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Press Release: Nonbrowning Arctic® Apples To Be Granted Approval

Summerland, B.C., Canada – Today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Healthy Inspection Service (APHIS) announced its decision to deregulate the first two nonbrowning apple varieties, Arctic® Golden and Arctic® Granny apples, in the United States. It is expected that APHIS’ final environmental assessment (EA) and plant pest risk assessment (PPRA) will be published in the Federal Register soon. According to the USDA’s announcement, these reviews have found that Arctic® apples “are unlikely to pose a plant pest risk” and deregulation “is not likely to have a significant impact on the human environment.” These Arctic apple cultivars were developed
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USDA APHIS open 2nd comment period for Arctic® apples

The U.S. government has opened the second, and final, comment period on nonbrowning Arctic® apples, meaning we’re closer than ever to achieving commercialization! The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Services (USDA APHIS) has posted their Environmental Assessment (EA) and Plant Pest Risk Assessment (PPRA) for our Arctic® Granny and Arctic® Golden varieties, and are requesting public input. This is the second U.S. comment period and comments will be accepted for 30 days, until December 9, 2013. The first comment period opened July 13, 2012 when APHIS posted for public review our 163 page petition requesting deregulation. We
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Ag-West Bio Company Profile: Okanagan Specialty Fruits

Because our company’s main lab is located in Saskatchewan, we are very fortunate to be members of Ag-West Bio, an organization that specializes in developing the life sciences industry in the province. Ag-West Bio is a not-for-profit, member-based organization that helps foster connections and education, especially through events like Canada’s National Biotechnology Week, which successfully concluded last month. Ag-West Bio recently released their Annual Report, which is publicly available right here, and they featured Okanagan Specialty Fruits in one of two company profiles (pages 14 & 15). The profile, titled “Science interacts with social media”, explores the science behind our
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Navigating the rigorous regulatory system

In both the U.S. and Canada, the regulatory process required to bring a biotech crop to market is extremely rigorous and challenging. As industry members involved in the process for the past several years, we’re amazed at how opponents to ag-biotech claim biotech enhanced crops aren’t thoroughly evaluated. Nothing could be further from the truth! Our timeline below demonstrates how long it’s taken just to get to the point where we could even apply for deregulation (never mind gain approval!): Assuming Arctic® apples complete both the U.S. and Canadian regulatory processes by early 2014; this means it will have taken 18
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