FDA approves bioengineered Arctic Fuji
Following the granny smith and golden delicious, the Arctic Fuji apple, engineered to resist browning, has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
Okanagan Specialty Fruits, Summerland, British Columbia, reported the FDA notified the company the FDA completed the voluntary review of the apple on April 26. The U.S. Department of Agriculture approved the Arctic Fuji in September 2016. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency and Health Canada approved it in January 2018.
The FDA approved The Arctic Granny Smith and Golden Delicious in 2015.
“Completion of this FDA review is important news for our company as it marks the last step needed for Arctic Fuji to officially join our commercial orchards,” Neal Carter, president of Okanagan Specialty Fruits (OSF), which grows the three apples in Washington, said in a news release. “We get a lot of feedback from people about what Arctic variety they’re excited to see next, and this latest announcement allows us to provide consumers with even more choice when it comes to purchasing value-added fruits for their families to enjoy.”
The apples are grown primarily for the fresh-cut retail and foodservice markets, due to their non-browning feature, but some are sold whole and off-size Arctic Granny Smiths and Arctic Golden Delicious are cut into strips and dried for Apbitz snacks.
The three OSF varieties are bioengineered to turn off the enzyme responsible for browning, reducing shrink throughout the supply chain, according to the release.
Arctic apples were first available in 2017, and the company has been ramping up production of the three varieties.
“There have been some major developments for OSF recently, and I’m excited to see what comes next as this is definitely just the start for us,” Carter said in the release.