Farm Fresh vs. Industry Standard

The Fruit Movement Team along with friends / family went to Mackintosh Farms in Berryville, VA for apple picking. We learned an important lesson about apples: Do not judge an apple by its cover. 

 Fruit Movement Team & Friends!

Fruit Movement Team & Friends!

In the past few years, there has been a major push for organic and "Farm to Fork". If you ever go apple picking you will quickly realize that the apples growing on trees do not look like your grocery store apples. The apples you buy in the grocery store go through an number of quality control measures to ensure that consumers get apples fitting industry standards. However, just because an apple isn't beautiful on the outside, doesn't mean it's not delicious. 

This brought up an interesting problem. Do consumers care more about organic or beauty? See the image below between an apple picked off the tree versus your local grocery store. The apple on the left is ugly. It has an odd shape, damaged by hail, but it tastes absolutely amazing. The apple on the right fits consumer standards for how an apple should look and it tastes good, but not nearly as good as the hand picked one. 

 Hand-picked Fuji Apple from the farm

Hand-picked Fuji Apple from the farm

 Example of Fuji aple seen in grocery stores

Example of Fuji aple seen in grocery stores

At FM, one of our goals is to partner with more local distributors. One of the challenges is that local farmers may not mass produce perfect fruit. As a result, we are going educate consumers on fruits. Over time this will help update people's perceptions of what is a safe fruit to eat thus supporting local farms and reducing the waste of fruits that do not fit the industry standards for shape / size. 

Indy Bal