Who Needs a Prettier Apple?

image via Mercola.com

 

It sure does bug us when our apples turn brown.
You know, the discoloration that occurs when you cut or bite into an apple and its flesh is exposed to air.
One apple grower is convinced that it bugs us so much that we’ll choose a non-browning variety, even if it’s a genetically-modified organism. The USDA is currently sitting on the application for the Arctic®Apple, which its inventor hopes will be the first approved food that’s been genetically modified solely for cosmetic reasons.

It’s an awfully big deal when a crop is genetically modified.
Bio-engineered crops can impact health, the environment, and market dynamics, and we don’t even fully understand all the risks. Although many in the scientific community would like to see it banned altogether, an argument can be made for agricultural biotech that addresses issues like world hunger or devastating pathogens. That’s why most GMO crops are designed to resist pests or disease, to grow faster, or to produce extra nutrients.
But not the Arctic®Apple; it’s been sliced and diced at the molecular level to spare us the need to add a sprinkle of lemon juice to prevent slices from browning.

The food industry already has plenty of techniques for maintaining the appearance and extending the shelf life of apples so that a ‘fresh’ apple in the supermarket can actually be from last year’s harvest.
They’re sprayed with wax or shellac to make them shiny and seal in moisture. They’re flushed with nitrogen, carbon dioxide, 1-methylcyclopropene, and other inert gases, and stored for months in sealed, controlled atmosphere storage facilities. They’re irradiated using high-energy electrons or X-rays from accelerators, or by gamma rays emitted from radioactive sources. The Dorian Gray-like Arctic®Apple won’t even bruise to alert you to damage or decomposition.

How do you like them apples?
The agricultural biotechnology company Okanagan Specialty Fruits has petitioned the USDA and FDA for approval to sell the Arctic®Apple in the U.S. The USDA has paused in the middle of the approval process, and over the next week the agency is asking for consumer input. The U.S. Apple Association, the Northwest Horticultural Council (representing growers of more than 60% of the U.S. apple crop), and other grower groups have already voiced their disapproval of the Arctic®Apple.

Submit your comments through the Regulation.gov website.

 

 

3 Responses to Who Needs a Prettier Apple?

  1. Janice says:

    You’ve all got it right-it’s about the labeling. But even that doesn’t prevent cross-contamination in the fields and orchards.

  2. Sophia F says:

    I dont want prettier apples that are GMO I want healthy non gmo apple. I will NOT buy these apples. I would rather deal with an apple that turns brown then a GMO apple. I am telling everyone in my family and my friends the dangers of GMO and encouraging everyone to not buy and to vote to have them labeled in November.

  3. anne davis says:

    ALL food should be labeled so we know what contains GMOs. There is absolutely no reason to mess around with nature. Gee, an apple starts to turn brown after we bite into it. So what?! Changing the very character of food will turn out to be a detriment to our health. STOP MESSING AROUND WITH OUR FOOD!!!

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