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Minnesota grown ... from New Zealand?

Posted by by Colin Lyons, produce buyer
Thursday, May 31, 2012

During the spring months as we walk through the produce department, most of us are thinking about berries, cherries, and peaches. After all, this is the season when those summertime items begin to get bigger, brighter, and tastier. Many people tend to speed past the apple displays and barely give them a second look. We have been conditioned to buy apples when the leaves change, not when they blossom. However, there is a new reason to give the apple section a lot more attention as we move closer to summer.

The legendary HoneyCrisp apple has been cultivated in the very capable apple growing country of New Zealand. The very same seed developed here at the University of Minnesota has made the long trek to this Pacific island nation. With the help of our local grower and partner Pepin Heights Orchards, Waipopo Orchards in Timaru, New Zealand have nurtured and picked a beautiful HoneyCrunch apple that rivals the best the United States has to offer.

HoneyCrunch? What’s that you say? Pepin Heights and Waipopo have decided to market this New Zealand HoneyCrisp as the HoneyCrunch apple. This is to set the New Zealand HoneyCrisp apart from other HoneyCrisp apples that may be available at this time.

This apple is very particular about where it likes to grow. Any deviation from the correct climate conditions and the HoneyCrisp can look green and fall short of the flavor it is known for. Waipopo’s orchards on South Island offer that “just right” climate that produces the best HoneyCrisp, or rather, HoneyCrunch! I am confident you can taste the difference.

This season will be very short with supplies only lasting until about the middle of June. Get them while you can. They are the perfect addition to any salad, dessert, or just by themselves. I would love to hear what you think!

Tags: apples

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