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Non-browning apple developed in Summerland receives Health Canada approval

Arctic Gala is latest from Okanagan Specialty Fruits to pass inspection
The Arctic Gala, from Okanagan Specialty Fruits, has received Health Canada approval. (Okanagan Specialty Fruits)

The developer and grower behind a trademarked non-browning apple has received approval for the commercialization of its latest apple variety.

Health Canada notified Okanagan Specialty Fruits that it has no objection to the food use of the Arctic apple event in the company’s latest apple, the Arctic Gala.

Earlier, Health Canada had approved the company’s Arctic Granny, Arctic Golden and Arctic Fuji varieties.

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Okanagan Specialty Fruits has also received authorization from the Plant Biotechnology Office of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to release the Arctic Gala.

The apple, like other Arctic apples, resists browning caused by bruising and slicing. As a result, it reduced the number of apples damaged through the supply chain. The shelf life for fresh sliced products extends to 28 days.

The food inspection agency said the Arctic Gala does not display any novel traits and is substantially equivalent in use and safety to other commercially available apples.

Neal Carter, co-founder and chief executive officer of Okanagan Specialty Fruits, applauded the decision.

“This is an important step in our efforts to add a fourth apple variety to the Arctic family of apples and continues our sustainability efforts to reduce unnecessary apple waste,” he said.

“Our ongoing commitment to innovation and expanding the Arctic apple lineup reflects OSF’s dedication to meeting the evolving needs and preferences of consumers, culinary professionals, and food service partners.”

The Arctic Gala received approval by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 2021 and is under review by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Okanagan Specialty Fruits is working on the release of Arctic Honey and Arctic Pink apple varieties.

In late September, Okanagan Specialty Fruits unveiled a fruit processing facility in Moses Lake, Wash. The facility can produce more than 22.5 million kilograms of apples each year.

John Arendt

About the Author: John Arendt

John Arendt has worked as a journalist for more than 30 years. He has a Bachelor of Applied Arts in Journalism degree from Ryerson Polytechnical Institute.
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