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Genetically Modified Apples Won’t Turn Brown: First Batch Soon To Hit Stores In America

Update Date: Jan 21, 2017 09:07 AM EST

Genetically modified apples will hit the shelves of ten Midwest stores in American for the first time in February and March. The packed slices are engineered not to turn brown even when sliced.

Produced by Okanagan Specialty Fruits of Summerland, B.C., the genetically modified apples has reduced polyphenol oxidase enzyme to prevent browning for three weeks after it is bitten, sliced or bruised. The Arctic brand sliced and packaged Golden Delicious apples were reported not to have chemical and flavour-altering additives.

Neal Carter, founder and president of the company, said he is optimistic with the genetically modified apples because people love them at trade shows. He believes that product is great and even the eating quality is excellent.

Around 500 boxes weighing 40 pounds of genetically modified sliced apples will hit some Midwest stores. Carter will not identify the name of the retailers, saying that it is up to owners to be known.

Nothing on the packaging will identify that the apples are genetically modified, but a QR computer scan code will let the consumer get the information. However, Carter already said that the sliced apples will be sold under the Arctic brand.

Okanagan Specialty Fruits is expected to produce 6,000 boxes of genetically modified apple slices from the 2017 fall crop. It has orchards in British Columbia and around 85,000 trees at an undisclosed location in Washington.

In preparation for 2018, the company is expected to plant 300,000 trees this year, and bud around 500,000. Their goal is to plant 800 to 1,000 acres in northwest and eastern part of the country, with an addition of 600 to 800 acres in Canada by 2021.

Nearly two years ago, the first genetically modified apples were approved by U.S. Department of Agriculture. The U.S. Apple Association said that they support the consumers' choice if they want a genetically modified apple that won't turn brown.

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