Picking of Kissabel apple varieties recently ended in Chile, Argentina, New Zealand, Australia and South Africa. The results are very positive. Thanks to the relatively normal climatic conditions of the summer months, the quality and size of the fruits are excellent. Red-fleshed apples, with their inviting crunch and extraordinary taste, are poised to seduce consumers in the southern hemisphere.
One of the most enthusiastic responses came from Australia, the country with the most advanced breed program in the southern hemisphere. “The Kissabel apple harvest has gone very well,” said Angela Bracken, marketing manager for Montague. “The growing areas benefited from a cool summer and above-average rainfall. These conditions resulted in high quality, good sized fruit. However, the wet conditions also presented challenges, but the results were absolutely positive.
Sales are also positive. “Our recently opened store, Bill’s Orchard Gate, allows us to introduce Kissabel directly to locals and ask them their opinion on the characteristics and taste of these apples. We have received very good feedback and several customers have returned for information. complementary and to buy even more apples, but that’s not all, we have now also included Kissabel apples in the visits we organize for consumers in our orchards to tell them even more about these apples.”
Montague has launched a variety of marketing actions to promote consumption of its range of pink and red flesh apples, ranging from in-store displays (which are also used in customer and media gift boxes), information sessions, tastings and public relations activities with posts on social media.
In neighboring New Zealand, the Kissabel program is also continuing and the anticipation continues. “We are now in the third year of testing,” says Paul Paynter, CEO of Yummyfruit. “You could say that these apples, with their less acid taste, are exactly what we expected. This feature is particularly appreciated by Asian consumers, a group that we are increasingly targeting.
Further west, South Africa is an important growing area. The testing phase is already well advanced here and producers are focusing on the red-fleshed varieties. These are better adapted to the soil and climate of the country. “We focus exclusively on red-fleshed varieties,” confirms Tanith Freeman, product development manager at Dutoit. “The first commercial season is scheduled for 2025. We will focus on the best local supermarkets.”
Finally, trials with culture at the Chilean Unifrutti and the Argentinian Mono Azul have also given excellent results. “The coloring of the flesh and the crunchy texture of the Kissabel apples are very good,” says Riccardo Gatti, production manager at Unifrutti. “The feedback from people who have tasted the apples has been extremely positive. So much so that our limited stocks sold out very quickly. This year we are focusing on testing in Central America. We are very optimistic about how the next . . walk.”
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