Nonbrowning apple riles rival growers
- Article by: ANDREW POLLACK
- New York Times
- July 12, 2012 - 8:14 PM
A small company is trying to bring to market a genetically engineered apple that does not turn brown when sliced or bruised. But it has much of the rest of the apple industry seeing red.
Okanagan Specialty Fruits says the nonbrowning apple will prove popular with consumers and food service companies and help increase sales of apples, in part by making sliced apples more attractive to serve or sell.
But the U.S. Apple Association, which represents the U.S. apple industry, opposes introduction of the product, as do some other industry organizations. They say that, while they do not believe that the genetic engineering is dangerous, it could undermine the fruit's image as a healthy and natural food.
"We don't think it's in the best interest of the apple industry of the United States to have that product in the marketplace at this time," said Christian Schlect, president of the Northwest Horticultural Council, which represents the tree-fruit industry in and around Washington state, which produces about 60 percent of the nation's apples.
The Agriculture Department is expected on Friday to open a 60-day public comment period on Okanagan's application for regulatory approval of the genetically modified apple trees.
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