Canadian Apples Take Centre Stage
Crisp and delicious, the Canadian apple is a staple at harvest season, enjoyed on its own or as part of a classic recipe like an amazing apple pie. But finding fresh apples out of season has always been a challenge, which is where Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada research comes in.
Scientists at the Kentville Research and Development Centre have found a way to significantly extend shelf life and freshness through a technology called HarvestWatch™. This involves monitoring the chlorophyll fluorescence (a measure of plant stress) in apples kept in storage. The data is used to calibrate temperature and other environmental factors (even oxygen and carbon dioxide levels), ensuring that apples stay as fresh as possible, for as long as possible.
HarvestWatch™ is especially ideal for storing organic products, since these environmental controls alone maintain freshness.
For consumers, it means the healthiest, tastiest produce possible, year-round. And it isn't just apples; scientists are now testing how HarvestWatch™ can be applied to other crops, from grapes to bananas.
- Ontario is Canada's largest apple producer.
- With a 2016 farm gate value of almost $223 million, apples are Canada’s second most valuable fruit crop, after blueberries.
- Nova Scotia was responsible for more than 34,000 metric tonnes of apples in 2017.
More facts in a snapshot
Consult We Grow a Lot More Than You May Think to learn facts on the agriculture and agri-food sector in Canada.
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