Mini Apples Make Great Snacks
Rockit mini apples originated in New Zealand and are now blasting off in the North American market. Chelan Fresh owns the exclusive rights to grow, distribute and market the mini apple in Mexico, Canada and the U.S. The small apples are gaining popularity for snacking by adults and kids alike.
“We are selling them pretty much across the U.S.,” says Tom Riggan, Chelan Fresh Sales. “Every year there has been more interest. The Rockit has a long shelf life and is a high brix (sugar) apple. Mothers like it for their kids as it is small, easy for them to eat, and they don’t end up throwing out half an apple. They can eat the whole thing.”
Chelan initially introduced the Rockit in tubes holding 3, 4 or 5 apples each. They quickly recognized that consumers preferred buying them in larger packages. They now are sold in 3-lb. packs.
Riggan indicates there are no plans at this time to sell Rockit seedlings to either the commercial or consumer markets. The company began marketing the apples as imports from New Zealand about 6 years ago while planting their own.
“After about 3 years, we had our first crop to harvest here in Washington State,” says Riggan. “Gaining consumer acceptance required getting them to sample it. Once they realized it was a new apple and not a gimmick, it took off.”
Riggan describes the snack apple as having a unique flavor, with the sweetness of a Fuji and a little of the Gala taste.
“It has a pretty dense, small cell structure that breaks off in chunks when you bite into it, similar to a Honeycrisp,” he says. Suggested retail price for a 3-lb. pack is $7.99.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Chelan Fresh, 301 East Johnson Ave., Chelan, Wash. 98816 (ph 509 682-4252; contact@chelanfresh.com; www.chelanfresh.com).

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2020 - Volume #44, Issue #1