Apples that are cut or bruised will naturally brown in response to the “injury” of being cut or damaged. The speed and extent to which an apple browns depends on the variety. Natural browning of an apple is a result of that variety´s natural levels of polyphenol oxydase (PPL) and Vitamin C (ascorbic acid). The lower the level of PPL, the less the variety will brown. Conversely, the higher the level of vitamin C, the less the variety will brown.
Here is a fun tip: Coat your apple slices with a mixture of 1 cup water, one teaspoon lemon juice to slow the browning process.
Don’t want to pucker up with lemon juice? Most 100% apple juices sold in stores are fortified with vitamin C, so you can retain more apple flavor by using apple juice instead of lemon juice to prevent browning. Source U.S. Apple Association.
The U.S. apple industry uses two types of storage technology to ensure you receive the best quality apples any time of year. We use regular cold storage—like your own refrigerator—for short−term storage, and we use special, controlled atmosphere, or C.A., storage for longer storage.
Cold Storage: Each year, growers pick their apples at just the right time in the ripening cycle, when the apples are firm and will hold over a period of time but aren´t sour or starchy. The apples are then rushed to cold storage warehouses, consisting of large refrigerated storerooms, where the temperature is kept at 32 degrees and high humidity is maintained. This ideal refrigerated climate slows down but does not stop the ripening process. Most apples put in regular cold storage are sold by late January or early February, and the apples remain refrigerated on transfer trucks, grocery storage rooms, and then in produce aisles.
Controlled Atmosphere Storage: The natural atmosphere on earth is 21% oxygen, 0.25% carbon dioxide, plus nitrogen and other minor gases. Like humans, apples “breathe” during the ripening process. They intake oxygen and release carbon dioxide. In 1940, Dr. Robert Smock of Cornell University experimented with reducing oxygen and increasing carbon dioxide in storage facilities, resulting in the development of a new storage technology called controlled atmosphere (CA) storage. CA storage requires air−tight, refrigerated warehouse rooms that are sealed after the apples are placed inside. The oxygen content in the storeroom air is reduced from 21% to 2.5%, and the carbon dioxide level is increased from 0.25% to 2−5%, and high humidity is maintained. The CA process radically reduces the ripening process, thus allowing us to provide great−tasting U.S. apples year round. CA rooms are opened and converted to regular cold storage rooms usually after the first of the year, depending on demand and supply conditions.
Apples ripen 10 times faster at 70 degrees than at 32 degrees, and five times faster at 40 degrees. Refrigerating your apples, pears and cherries when you bring them home from the grocery store is a great way to extend their freshness. Properly-refrigerated fruit can keep anywhere from 4-6 weeks. Store your fruit away from strong-smelling foods to prevent them from absorbing unpleasant odors. Source Washington Apple Commission.
If you walked out into an orchard, picked an apple from the tree and rubbed that apple on your shirt, you would notice that it shined. You´ve just polished the natural wax that an apple produces to protect its high water content. Without wax, fruits and vegetables like apples would lose their appealing crispness and moisture through normal respiration and transpiration − eventually leaving them soft and dry. After harvest, apples are washed and brushed to remove leaves and field dirt from nature before they are packed for shipping to your local market. This cleaning process removes the fruit´s original wax coating, so to protect the fruit, a commercial grade wax then applied. One pound of wax may cover as many as 160,000 pieces of fruit; perhaps two drops is the most wax covering any apple. Waxes have been used on fruits and vegetables since the 1920’s. They are all made from natural ingredients and are certified by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to be safe to eat. They come from natural sources including carnauba wax, from the leaves of a Brazilian palm; candelilla wax, derived from reed−like desert plants of the genus Euphorbia; and food−grade shellac, which comes from the lac bug found in India and Pakistan. These waxes are also approved for use as food additives for candy and pastries (this is why your chocolate bars melt in your mouth but not in your hand). Commercial waxes do not easily wash off because they adhere to any natural wax remaining on the fruit after cleaning. Waxed produce can be scrubbed gently with a vegetable brush in lukewarm water and rinsed prior to eating. Source U.S. Apple Association.
Our organic apples and pears are not waxed; however all apples—including organic apples--produce their own natural wax. If you walked out into an orchard, picked an apple from the tree and rubbed that apple on your shirt, you would notice that it shined – you've just polished the natural wax that an apple produces to protect its high water content. As a result, our organic apples may appear to have been waxed, but that is not the case. It is simply the naturally occurring wax that the apple itself produces.
You know the old adage: “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” Well, that’s actually some sound advice! Here’s why: Eating one large apple provides 20% of the recommended daily value of dietary fiber, 8% of the antioxidant Vitamin C, and 7% of your day’s potassium, all for only 130 calories… with no fat, no sodium, and no cholesterol! Did you know adding apples to your diet can help you lose weight? One apple before each main meal is an effective and healthy way to increase hydration, reduce appetite and increase fiber. Source Washington Apple Commission.
CMI delivers fresh apples, pears, cherries and apricots to all 50 U.S. States as well as to 60 countries across the world. If there is a specific variety you are trying to source, we recommend talking to the Produce Manager of your preferred store. In most cases they can order and supply the variety in that you requested, particularly when there is a lot of interest from customers. Due to the limited scale of our operation, unfortunately we are not set up to ship fruit to individual customers. In addition to the cost of doing so, shipping can be very hard on the fruit when it is not trucked in a refrigerated container, stacked on pallets.
The codes on fruit stickers (PLU stickers) are used by retailers to identify the product, enter it into their product database and assign a price. For example, the code #4129 is used to identify all small Fuji apples, regardless of where the fruit was grown. All growers that ship small Fuji must use the same code to identify their fruit. This makes it easy for retailers to set up pricing databases. PLU codes for conventional fruit are four digits long. Organic produce is identified with a five digit number, beginning with the number 9. For example, organic small Fuji would be the same code as the conventional small Fuji, but with a 9 in front - #94129.
No. All CMI fruit is as pure and natural as Mother Nature intended. We do not grow any GMO fruit, nor do we have any plans to.
First of all, we are very sorry to hear this! With a fresh product, grown by nature, in variable weather and with ever-changing conditions, it is inevitable that there will be imperfections from time to time. While we are set up with state of the art technology that is used to scan and sort our fruit before it is packed, sometimes things happen to our fruit during the supply chain that is beyond our control. For example, fruit that is stored at higher temperatures on retail shelves can deteriorate more quickly. If you are dissatisfied with your purchase, we recommend returning it to the store that you bought it from. Most retailers are willing to refund or replace your purchase.
In some cases what you are seeing is natural calcium. Many orchards have overhead sprinkling systems which are used to irrigate throughout the warm summer growing season. If the water contains naturally occurring calcium it occasionally remains on the apples after the irrigation water evaporates. It is not harmful in any way.
You may also occasionally see a natural substance called Kaolin clay, which is refined for orchard use. This food grade clay is applied to fruit during the growing season as an alternative to pesticides. The clay naturally control pests and has an added benefit of preventing the fruit from getting sunburned. While our fruit is washed and waxed prior to being sold, sometimes, particularly on organic fruits, our brushes don’t catch it all. Just give your fruit a quick rinse before eating, and it should be just as perfect as ever.
While it is possible to plant an apple or pear seed, or a cherry pit, and to produce a plant from that seed, it is not possible to produce the same variety as the seed/pits parent.
For example, to reproduce a Red Delicious apple, orchardists graft a budding twig from the parent tree onto a young tree (called a rootstock or rootstalk). This small tree looks just like a small stick with roots. Once the parent tree’s twig is grafted onto the rootstock, it develops leaves and continues to grow, eventually producing Red Delicious apples. Sometimes, rootstock can be grafted with multiple different parent twigs, resulting in trees that bear multiple varieties of fruit.
All of CMI’s domestic fruit is grown in Washington State, U.S.A. In order to ship our fruit to Canada, we are required to print French on our packages. Due to the cost of producing packaging, and inventory management, we do not produce multiple versions of our packaging and instead use bilingual packaging for the U.S. and for Canada.
We have established premier growing partners in New Zealand, Chile and Argentina. We regularly visit these orchards to ensure the highest growing practices are upheld and we’re extremely proud of the fruit sourced for American consumers from these countries. Imported fruit helps us ensure that we have a fresh year-round supply of apples, pears and cherries for our customers.