Kathryn Grandy and Chantea McIntyre Dish on Cosmic Crisp® Success
YAKIMA, WA - 2019 has been a busy year for the Cosmic Crisp® as the variety makes waves with its impact on market share, flavor, quality, and differentiation. The result of 20 years of study and research by Washington State University's world-class tree fruit breeding program, Cosmic Crisp apples are a unique cross between the Enterprise and the Honeycrisp, presenting a large, juicy fruit and a firm, crisp texture that retailers and consumers are looking for—in addition to a balance of sweet and tart eating attributes that apple-lovers desire.
“The name, ‘Cosmic,’ was chosen for the apple’s starburst-like lenticels that can be seen on the surface, resembling the cosmos,” Kathryn Grandy, Director of Marketing for Proprietary Variety Management, expressed. “And ‘Crisp’ is a tribute to its parent, the Honeycrisp.”
This October presented the biggest industry showcase yet for the Cosmic Crisp program, as PMA Fresh Summit brought together buyside decision-makers from across the industry to discover what’s new, what’s innovative, and how they can tap into new opportunities—the Cosmic Crisp team did not disappoint.
“The buzz around the Cosmic Crisp was palpable—conversations could be overhead about the apple from growers and even general PMA guests,” Chantea McIntyre, a Cosmic Crisp Ambassador, shared. “Cosmic Crisp is bringing much-needed excitement to the apple industry.”
Kathryn added that the team offered nearly 500 free drink tickets and invited attendees to visit the Hilton Anaheim in California, where the entire staff wore Cosmic Crisp t-shirts.
“Sitting under an all-encompassing umbrella of Cosmic Crisp signage, we raised our glasses to celebrate the launch of the Cosmic Crisp apple,” she said. “The excitement around this apple stems from the fact that it's something new from Washington State—a unique apple developed and grown here. While our 2019 season is a limited volume, The Cosmic Crisp will be widely available in 2020 when we project 2.1 million boxes that can address consumer demand for a delicious year-round apple.”
The buzz on the show floor was generated by how the delicious combination of texture and flavor truly offered a coveted experience.
“It is unlike anything we have seen so far from an apple. The Cosmic Crisp is very versatile and delicious right off the table, but also really shines when prepared in a salad or pie. I love it when I can really get behind not only a product but a team!” Chantea added.
So, what are some of these additional benefits that have the buyside’s interest piqued? It stores well, keeps a long time while tasting fresh off the tree, is a beautiful red/bi-colored apple grown to just the right size and shape, has an enormous crispness and firm texture, and touts "wipe your lips off" juiciness, Kathryn noted.
“The delicious flavor and versatility lend to its ability to be great for entertaining, cooking, and a fresh eating experience,” Kathryn shared. “With a ship date of December 1st, the time is now for retailers to reach out and get POS displays and merchandising design files from their sales companies. PVM has brochures and sales sheets available and retail-ready signage distributed to Washington State sales companies.”
How will this new apple variety fare on the marketing stage with apple lovers? If the Fresh Summit reception was any sign—we will be talking about this apple all year long.