Posts Tagged ‘apples’

Canadian Apple That Resists Browning

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

NYC - Grand Central Terminal
For anyone who has sliced up an apple knows, leave it on the plate for a few minutes, and it starts to brown. It looks a lot less appetizing. Maybe that’s about to change: Okanagan Specialty Fruits, a Canadian biotechnology firm based in Summerland, British Columbia has developed a genetically modified apple that resists browning after it is sliced or bruised. The benefits are obvious:

  • Producers can cut wastage from superficial bruising.
  • Fresh cut apple processors can eliminate treatments that prevent browning, reducing costs.

According to company president Neal Carter:

We think that there is value in this product all the way along the value chain — growers, packers and especially the food service industry, where people are putting fruit in bags and on buffet tables and in salads.

Okanagan Specialty Fruits has asked the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), Health Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency about bringing its apple to market. Carter says:

The apples look exactly like what you’d expect – a Golden or Granny or Fuji – and it tastes like a normal apple. Their composition is, if anything, better or more nutritious, because as you’d expect, browning is a bad thing in an apple.

Of course “genetically modified” is a dirty term with some people, so it will be interesting to gauge market acceptance if the apples are approved. In the mean time, if you don’t want your apple slices to brown at home, simply try adding a few drops of lemon juice. The acid in the lemon juice prevents the oxidation that causes the apple slices to brown.

Read More:

Vancouver Sun: B.C. firm develops apples that won’t turn brown when sliced

Food Navigator-USA: B.C. firm develops apples that won’t turn brown when sliced

Creative Commons License photo credit: r0sss