Honey Bear’s Smitten™ Apple Volume Rises

Smitten™ trees in a Quincy, WA orchard.

Smitten™ trees in a Quincy, WA orchard.

The Smitten™ apple variety is increasing in volume for Honey Bear Tree Fruit Co.

Randy Steensma, president of the Wenatchee, Wash.-based company, said 2016 will be the first year the company will be able to offer substantial volume, with about 80,000 cartons expected.

The trade market is “Once bitten, forever Smitten™.” Steensma said the apple is one of the most flavorful apples. The thin-skinned variety is semisweet, firm and crunchy. The managed variety, administered by Honey Bear Tree Fruit C., has grower groups in Washington and Canada and the start of grower contracts and distributorships in Michigan and New York.

Honey Bear Tree Fruit packed about 250,000 cartons of Honeycrisp in the 2015-16 season and excitement continues for the variety, he said. “We’re still riding the wave of Honeycrisp.”

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