Keeping the customer satisfied

  • October 1st, 2010

Over the past ten years I have initiated a number of research trials that, when taken together, tell an important story about the link between apple quality and profitability. I often quote my mantra that “we are in the food business” along with McDonald’s, Wal-Mart, and even the slow [...]

WSU releases second new apple, called WA 5

  • October 1st, 2010

Just a year after the release of WA 2, WSU’s apple breeding program in Wenatchee is releasing its second new cultivar, WA 5. WA 5 is sufficiently different from WA 2 in ripening season, appearance, and eating quality to justify its release.

With a bright orange-red stripe covering 60 to [...]

  • Steps to commercialization

Steps to commercialization

  • October 1st, 2010

New apple varieties from Washington State University are evaluated and ­commercialized under the following general guidelines.

Phase 1: Initial seedling selection and evaluation The Washington Apple Breeding Program evaluates many thousands of seedlings, with input from its Industry Advisory Council. The breeding program identifies selections for ­advancement to Phase 2.

Phase 2: [...]

Mysterious ailment strikes

  • October 1st, 2010

A mysterious disease that has been killing the best looking, reddest strains of McIntosh apples in the nicest orchards in the northwest quadrant of Michigan has tentatively been identified, and growers now have some idea what to do about it.

“We’re not quite there yet,” said Dr. George Sundin, the [...]

  • Totally RED

Totally RED

  • October 1st, 2010

Because the red pigments are antioxidants, red-fleshed apples do not turn brown when sliced.

Swiss nursery owner and fruit breeder Markus Kobelt hit the headlines across Europe with the ­latest apple varieties he released. They are among the first red-fleshed apples in the world to go into commercial production.

Kobelt, who [...]

  • Pear breeding moves toward better varieties

Pear breeding moves toward better varieties

  • September 1st, 2010

Richard Bell works to develop better pears with the flavor of Bartlett and resistance to fireblight and pear psylla, and more precocious.

One of the problems with pears is their lack of precocity. They stay juvenile, taking up valuable space and waiting just too long to grow up and produce [...]

  • Minnesota growers feel excluded

Minnesota growers feel excluded

  • August 1st, 2010

A key question for Minnesota growers is whether SweeTango is a club, niche apple of minor consequence or a “Honeycrisp killer” destined for the mainstream.

Fred Wescott, who grows apples and operates Wescott Orchards and Agri Products, a packing facility in Elgin, Minnesota, told Good Fruit Grower that the exclusive [...]

  • Pox-resistant plum registered

Pox-resistant plum registered

  • July 1st, 2010

The HoneySweet plum is sweet and flavorful and highly resistant to the plum pox virus.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced its conditional registration of a plum pox virus resistance gene contained in a new plum variety called HoneySweet.

Dr. Ralph Scorza, research horticulturist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s [...]

  • New apples for New York

New apples for New York

  • July 1st, 2010

Dr. Susan Brown began breeding the new releases in 1996 and screened thousands of seedlings in the search.

Right from the start, Dr. Susan Brown knew what she wanted: An apple that was as delightful to consumers as Honeycrisp but without all its warts. Honeycrisp has problems that make it [...]

  • Exclusively New York

Exclusively New York

  • July 1st, 2010

A row of New York 1 apples nears maturity.

Cornell University  has had an apple breeding program for about 110 years, and it’s been quite successful. New York 1 and New York 2 are the 65th and 66th new varieties released by Cornell since breeding began, and the list includes [...]

  • New York growers join the club

New York growers join the club

  • July 1st, 2010

New York 1 is a Honeycrisp offspring without many of its flaws, and New York growers indicate they want to plant it.

In announcing its formation last August, NYAG LLC, also known as New York Apple Growers, set out a game plan for a managed variety “club” made up of [...]

  • NEW APPLE is first of many

NEW APPLE is first of many

  • July 1st, 2010

About 130 Washington growers are evaluating WSU’s first apple, WA 2, in their orchards.

Soon, Washington State growers are going to have a wide choice of new apple varieties to grow, all of which are being developed specifically for them.

Washington State University has released the first two varieties from its [...]