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RubyFrost makes debut at local farm markets

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 28 October 2013 at 12:00 am

Photo by Tom Rivers – Brown’s Berry Patch is selling the new RubyFrost apple that is being released to the public for the first time this fall. Several other local farm markets are selling the apple.

WATERPORT – A month ago local apple growers introduced consumers to the new SnapDragon apple. Those farmers quickly sold out of the variety, which has been promoted heavily in the media.

Growers have another new apple, RubyFrost, which matures later in the season. That apple has been picked and many growers are selling it at local markets. RubyFrost is a red apple that tastes sweet and tart. It is compared to Empire and Granny Smith varieties.

RubyFrost is a hard apple to bite, I can attest to that. I tried one for the first time today at Brown’s Berry Patch. Growers are excited about the apple because it stores well. Nutritionists say it will provide a boost of vitamin C well into winter.

RubyFrost and SnapDragon have been more than a decade in the making. They were developed by Cornell researchers. A new organization that consists only of New York apple growers, NYAG LLC, was formed to sign up farmers to grow the crop on limited acres so there wouldn’t be an oversupply, leading to crashing prices for growers.

The new apples are being released through farm markets this fall and next year. The apples won’t be readily available in grocery stores until 2015 when recent plantings have a full crop.