'An apple a day keeps the doctor away'. Ever since we're kids, we've taught about this nutritious fruit. We love apples, but we hate it when it turns brown. Though, browning is natural for fruits, it makes them look less appetizing. Therefore, experts came up with the first genetically modified apples that brown slower than ordinary fruits!
Okanagan Specialty Fruits will be selling the genetically modified apples under the brand name Arctic Apples. By shutting down the genes responsible for producing an enzyme known as polyphenol oxidase or PPO, the company reduced the browning of the apples after being sliced or bruised.
Due to suppressed PPO, Arctic Apples age and brown at a slower rate. It takes three weeks for these apples to fully oxidize.
Arctic Apples will be sent to 10 unnamed retailers in the Midwest, US. Consumers may expect that the fruits will not be explicitly identified as genetically modified, although this information can be found if the customer scans a QR computer code on the packaging.
"We are selling it under the Arctic brand and we’ve had a lot of press and attention, so I assume most people will know what it,” Okanagan’s founder and president Neal Carter told Capital Press.
Though the distribution of the Arctic Apples is still currently limited, the company plans to increase the production this spring. From 85,000 trees planted in Washington state, they're planning to add trees up to 300,000 more.
“We’re very optimistic with respect to this product because people love it at trade shows,” Cater told The Verge
. “It’s a great product and the eating quality is excellent.”