(UPDATED COVERAGE, 9:09 a.m., Dec. 6) A new Washington company aims to help fruit grower-shippers stay on the cutting edge of new varietal development.

Yakima-based Proprietary Variety Management was founded this fall by Lynnell Brandt, president of Yakima, Wash.-based Pink Lady America LLC and Brandt’s Fruit Trees LLC, said Alan Taylor, marketing director of both Pink Lady America and the new company.

Brandt is the president of Proprietary Variety Management. The company’s general manager is John Reeves, who also serves as Pink Lady America’s general manager.

Other officers include Kevin Brandt, vice president; Cristy Warnock, operations manager; and Cindy Tissell, comptroller.

Traditionally, Taylor said, nurseries have kept growers abreast of new varieties. Proprietary Variety Management hopes to take that process a step further by aiding growers in the commercialization and marketing of new varieties.

“We’re trying to instill a different kind of thinking,” said Taylor, who cited intellectual property as a key field in which Proprietary Variety Management will advise grower-shippers.

The company also will advise growers on diversifying product lines to include juices, flavored products and other offerings.

In its efforts to help growers adopt new varieties of fruit, Proprietary Variety Management will draw on Brandt’s Fruit Trees’ close ties with the Associated International Group of Nurseries, of which it is a member, Taylor said.