Koru apple growers in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania are looking for their biggest and best harvest so far this fall.
The branded apple variety originated in New Zealand and is imported to the U.S. from May through September. U.S.-grown Koru apples are marketed from October through March, according to a news release.
Koru apples are managed by Coast to Coast Growers, which has exclusive rights to import and grow Koru in the U.S.
The Koru variety is a cross between fuji and braeburn and was first discovered in New Zealand in 1994. The apple cultivar is Plumac and is registered as Koru after the Maori word that symbolizes “new life, growth, strength and peace,” according to the release.
2015 marked the first season for U.S.-grown Koru to be harvested and sold in the U.S.
“This is our third year that we have worked collectively selling Koru, and each year the team gets stronger,” Kaari Stannard, president and owner of New York Apple Sales, said in the release. “We’re excited about the new crop. It’s shaping up to be a real crowd pleaser for apple customers.”
Mac Riggan, director of marketing for Chelan Fresh, said the Koru crop has good color and larger sizing compared with a year ago. “Near perfect weather in our growing region is providing an optimal formula for apple growth and eating qualities,” Riggan said.
Brent Shammo, sales representative for Oneonta Starr Ranch, said in the release that the new U.S. crop will follow on what has been a good import season.
This fall, all three sales groups will be providing several merchandising tools and support programs to retailers, according to the release. Those tools include in-store support with high-graphic cartons and display kiosks, support for sampling efforts, social media content, online coupons and instant rebates.