Honeybear Brands Gives Us a Behind-The-Scenes Look at Pazazz, Riverbelle, and Varietal Development Program
ELGIN, MN - When it comes to producing memorable and craveable apple varieties, Honeybear Brands understands that sometimes it takes a few tries, a lot of patience, and a little bit of luck. With close to 100 varieties currently in multiple stages of pre-commercial development, the Elgin, Minnesota-based apple leader is no stranger to putting in the work to make sure the apple-loving American public has the product they want. As the company's Pazazz apple arrives as the latest star of the company’s varietal development program, take a deeper look, and welcome to What’s in Store.
For every one of the hundreds of varieties Honeybear has evaluated over the years along with its growing and packing partners in Minnesota, Wisconsin, New York, Washington State, and Nova Scotia, a comprehensive array of testing includes everything from assessing the right microclimates, growing locations, and soil types, to evaluating tree productivity, yield, disease resistance, and so much more. On average, a new apple variety takes nearly 10 years to perfect.
But once you find a great variety, how can you get consumers to pay attention? Beyond the in-depth testing process, Honeybear gives great weight to customer feedback. Honeybear’s varietal development team works closely with retail store managers, buyers, and their customers to understand where a potential new variety will fit into the in-store apple line up, assessing its place as either a niche or everyday variety, or if it would cannibalize a market for a pre-existing variety.
Two of the company’s latest exciting apple varieties to come out of this extensive process are RiverBelle and Pazazz. Only grown in the Midwest, RiverBelle has quickly become an early Summer season local favorite. And Pazazz, a descendent of the crowd-pleasing Honeycrisp, is garnering wide North American appeal while being grown across the U.S. and Canada. Expectations for Pazazz to be the next truly national apple variety are high, thanks to rapid increases in planted acreage, strong production volumes, and more retailers than ever jumping on board to showcase this exceptional apple. In the first two months of 2017, there will be more commercially produced Pazazz in more retailers and more geographical markets than ever before. Thank you for watching What’s in Store.