Red fleshed apples ready to impact

Montague ramps up Kissabel apple marketing

Horticulture
READY: Packaged Australian Kissabel apples, which will have a highter profile this season.

READY: Packaged Australian Kissabel apples, which will have a highter profile this season.

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Montague Fresh is making sure Kissabel apples will be seen this season.

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AUSTRALIAN apple producer Montague Fresh is aiming to let as many shoppers as possible know there is a red-fleshed apple on the market in 2020.

Montague has upped the branding this season the Kissabel, an apple with a distinctly different internal colour to the tradition white or yellow.

Montague Fresh has harvested the variety in Australia since 2018.

General manager, Rowan Little, said the company has been encouraged by the quality of most of the series under test in Australia.

"All of the varieties have exhibited a pleasant range of orange/salmon coloured skin with attractive deep pink to red internal colour and very attractive white lenticel on most as well," Mr Little said.

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He said pushing the product this year was about helping build awareness into the future.

"This year we have invested in the development of Kissabel fruit stickers and trays to build brand awareness when we share Kissabel with our customers, retailers and media, in order to get them excited for future seasons," Mr Little said.

Australia, and one of it's southern hemisphere fruit rivals, Chile, is apparently leading the way with a good quality harvest for the variety, while New Zealand and Argentina report promising results.

From February to April, in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Chile and Argentina, the Ifored project partners are continuing in the assessment phase of the cultivars of the pink to deep red pulp.

Unifrutti from Chile reported a good crop too.

Production manager, Riccardo Gatti, said despite the reduced availability of water and high summer temperatures resulting from climatic change, the region had a nice Kissabel crop with excellent skin pigmentation and beautiful, intense red colours inside

"Hopefully, we are going to start marketing the next season," Mr Gatti said.

New Zealand is making progress, with a good colour development, as reported by Paul Paynter of Yummy Fruit Company.

"We have our first crop here. Quality is very good from young trees. We will carry on with tests for one or two more seasons, so commercial launch is five years away," Mr Paynter said.

"The goal is to have a sweeter selection for Asia as this region represents now about 50 per cent of our exports."

Argentina is also in the test phase, with promising results.

Spokesperson of Moo Azul, Nicolas Sanchez said during this season, growers have noticed the fruits have a greater level of acidity, therefore it has opted for late harvests, in order to better balance the flavour./

"We have high expectations for some varieties of red pulp and envisage terminating the evaluation phase with the next harvest," Mr Sanchez said.

The evaluation phase in South Africa is continuing even though phytosanitary quarantine, until now has allowed for the entrance of few plants.

Dutoit Group product development manager, Tanith Freeman, said n commercialisation has been planned at this point.

"Two of the varieties evaluated are looking promising and show potential," Ms Freeman said.

Last month, Montague also launched the season for another of its apple brand, Envy.

Described as an apple with a "dense flesh that is somewhat sweeter than other apples", the 2020 Envy crop will deliver more than 1.5 million kilograms of fruit to Australian consumers.

The Envy apple is a naturally occurring cross between a Braeburn and a Royal Gala and is a sister variety to the Montague's other vareity, Jazz.

Montague managing director, Scott Montague, said it was a highly anticipated time.

"We are so excited the Envy season is here, it's such a great tasting, sweet apple," he said.

The story Red fleshed apples ready to impact first appeared on Good Fruit & Vegetables.

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