An apple is an edible fruit which comes from the apple tree (Malus sylvestris). It is widely cultivated in temperate climates. Over 7,000 varieties are known, of which 40 or so are commercially important. The most popular United States variety is known as the Delicious. 15 - 20% of the world's crop is produced in the United States. There are three main types of apples, those used for:
- making cider
In popular culture, The Forbidden Fruit, which was offered by the serpent to Eve, who then offered the apple to Adam, causing the fall of mankind, is often portrayed as an apple. The Bible does not specify the kind of fruit because in Old English and up to as late as the 17th century the word referred to fruit generally; that is any fruit or nut that was not a berry.
Heath Benefits and Risks
Apples have long been recognized as a healthy food. Although they contain sugar (fructose) they offer a variety of vitamins, minerals, and enzymes which are health for humans and many animals. Because of the health benefits of apples, the saying, "an apple a day keeps the doctor away" was coined. Unfortunately, modern apples are usually grown in the presence of pesticides. These pesticides find their way into this fruit to some extent, even when only the ground is sprayed. Perhaps of greater concern to many is the new genetically modified apple variety called Arctic. This variety was developed and released as quietly as possible by Okanagan Specialty Fruits. It is designed to better resist browning from oxygen exposure than regular apples in order to address the concerns of caterers and food services.
Some Popular Varieties
|Name||Ripens||Eating||Cooking||Apple Sauce||Apple Pie||Apple Juice|| Apple
|Arkansas Black||October, mid/late||Too Hard||Acceptable||Too Hard||Not the Best|
|Gala||August/September||Very Good||Acceptable||Very Good||Acceptable||Acceptable|
|Golden Delicious||September, mid/late||Acceptable||Acceptable||Good||Acceptable||Acceptable||Acceptable|
|Granny Smith||October, mid/late||Acceptable||Acceptable||Acceptable|
|Honeycrisp||September||Very Good||Acceptable||Acceptable||Acceptable||Very Good||Acceptable|
|Jonagold||September mid/late||Very Good||Very Good||Acceptable|
|Red Delicious||September, mid/late||Acceptable||Good||Acceptable|
- The New American Desk Encyclopedia, Penguin Group, 1989
- Foods & Nutrition Encyclopedia