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The Indefinite Article.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Why the Red Delicious No Longer Is

Why the Red Delicious No Longer Is:
Who's to blame for the decline of Red Delicious? Everyone, it seems. Consumers were drawn to the eye candy of brilliantly red apples, so supermarket chains paid more for them. Thus, breeders and nurseries patented and propagated the most rubied mutations, or 'sports,' that they could find, and growers bought them by the millions, knowing that these thick-skinned wonders also would store for ages.'Did they do it because it has less flavor? Obviously not,' said Eugene M. Kupferman, a post-harvest specialist at Washington State University's tree fruit research center in Wenatchee, Wash. 'They did it because it has better legs and they are getting more money for it.'
The other day, someone made mention of that book The Wisdom of Crowds. The story of the red delicious is an obvious counter-example.


  • I like fuji apples. And bicycles.

    By Blogger pablo, at 9:13 AM  

  • The only problem was the American consumer, whose verdict on the made-over apple has become increasingly clear: Of the two words in the Red Delicious name, one can no longer be believed. "They eventually went too far and ended up with apples the public didn't want to eat," said Lee Calhoun, an apple historian and retired orchardist in Pittsboro, N.C.

    If i'm reading this right, the public has in fact now turned their nose up to a product that was once delicious, but was made less so? Even if you could say it was less delicious, the red delicious is higher in antioxidants which would make them 'better' than other apples in a nutritional sense.

    And then at the end of article it seems as if the wisdom of crowds is working it's magic

    That view is borne out at the Brookville Super Market in Chevy Chase, where manager Sidney Hersh offers Red Delicious at 20 cents a pound cheaper than Golden Delicious, Granny Smith, Fuji and Gala varieties but sees the others outselling it by as much as 2 to 1.

    "People want something better," he said. "I would say in the past couple of years, something has changed."

    By Blogger Killy, at 10:35 AM  

  • i admit i buy red delicious because of the color - i look for the deepest darkest red there is because it will look beautiful in my green fruit basket - i also buy them because kroger offers these in small - they are the perfect size for my little boy who will eat only as much as he wants - a larger apple would mean a discarded half eaten piece of fruit turning up under a couch or under the bathroom sink next to a cluster of his army men - a smaller apple satisfies a toddler's appetite as well as a husband's

    By Blogger CarolinaDivina, at 11:19 AM  

  • Yes and no, Killy. Consumer demand shaped the development of that apple. It isn't that Walmart said to apple orchards: if you don't make something cheaper, redder and mealier, then we are going to buy them from China. Likewise, I think that very large trucks used for daily drives by single people will eventually go the way of the red delicious, but in the meantime the wisdom of the crowd trends toward those things.

    By Blogger Adolph, at 11:22 AM  

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