Consumer research explores acceptability of a new Canadian apple - Salish™.

Cliff, M.A., Stanich, K., and Hampson, C.R. (2014). "Consumer research explores acceptability of a new Canadian apple - Salish™.", Canadian Journal of Plant Science, 94(1), pp. 99-108. doi : 10.4141/CJPS2013-236  Access to full text

Abstract

This research compared consumer preferences for a new Canadian apple, Salish™ (cultivar SPA493), with commercial cultivars using data collected at two University of British Columbia Apple Festivals (2008, 2010). Mean acceptability by mouth and visual acceptability scores for Salish™ were compared with those for each of three tart (subacid/acid) cultivars (Granny Smith, McIntosh, Spartan) (2008, n ≈ 165) and two relatively new cultivars (Ambrosia, Honeycrisp) (2010, n=1182). T-tests on the 2008 data (n ≈ 165) revealed that Salish™ had higher consumer acceptability than Granny Smith and McIntosh. Analysis of variance of the 2010 data evaluated the influence of ethnicity (ancestral origin), age, gender and stated apple preference (sweet, tart), for the two largest sub-groups of consumers (Asian ethnicity, n=353 European ethnicity, n=725). While 88% of consumers of Asian ethnicity categorized themselves as sweet apple eaters, consumers of European ethnicity were both sweet (55%) and tart (45%) apple eaters. The sweet apple eaters rated Ambrosia higher in acceptability by mouth than Salish™, while tart apple eaters preferred Salish™. On average, consumers’ stated apple preference (sweet, tart) was consistent with their acceptability scores. Mean acceptability by mouth scores for consumers of Asian ethnicity were higher for Ambrosia and lower for Salish™ as compared with consumers of European ethnicity. The visual acceptability of red apples with a green ground (background) colour was significantly lower than those with a yellow ground colour. This suggested that sweet apple eaters of both ethnicities had a strong negative bias for apples with a slightly green ground colour. The work will assist industry in releasing and appropriately marketing cultivars to selected consumers in the metropolitan marketplace.

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