YAKIMA, Wash. — Cosmic Crisp®, a groundbreaking new Washington apple making its debut in stores in early December, is pleased to announce its partnership with two refrigerated product category leaders:Crunch Pak®, the sliced apples specialist, and Litehouse®, a 100% employee-owned company and a leader in refrigerated salad dressings and innovative consumer packaged goods. Crunch Pak will be the exclusive slicer of Cosmic Crisp® branded sliced apple pouches. Litehouse will offer Cosmic Crisp® branded cider in jugs. Both products will be available when the apple launches in December 2019.
Cosmic Crisp® fresh-cut apples pouches can be previewed at United Fresh 2019 in June and sampled at PMA Fresh Summit in October, followed by a December retail rollout. Cosmic Crisp® joins Crunch Pak’s robust offering of variety-specific apples.
“Our goal is to provide shoppers with an excellent eating experience. Having the exclusive rights to new varieties with complex flavor profiles helps us meet that goal and keep the category fresh,” said Ozgur Koc, Senior Vice President of Business and Product Development at Crunch Pak. “Cosmic Crisp®’s firm, crisp texture and sweet-tart flavor profile make it an ideal eating and slicing apple.”
“Partnering with Crunch Pak provides a huge boost to our sampling efforts and will increase the apple’s visibility nationally,” said Kathryn Grandy, Director of Marketing for Proprietary Variety Management (PVM), which is leading the Cosmic Crisp® retail launch. “We’re especially happy to be able to offer sliced apple samples to participants and attendees of the Missoula Children’s Theatre (MCT)’s national tour, of which Cosmic Crisp® is a sponsor.”
Litehouse, which already produces other apple cider varietals, will add cold-pressed Cosmic Crisp® cider to its portfolio as soon as the apple launches in December. “We are excited to partner with Cosmic Crisp® to create a new varietal offering,” said Theresa Lindholm, Brand Manager at Litehouse. “The juice is light in color, but it packs a bold, fresh flavor that has irresistible sweet and tart notes, and is unlike any of our other ciders. It will be the perfect addition to our existing cider offering.”
About Cosmic Crisp®
The Cosmic Crisp® WA 38 cv brand apple variety is the remarkable result of 20 years of study and research by Washington State University’s world-class tree fruit breeding program. Cosmic Crisp® brand apples are a cross between Enterprise and Honeycrisp. The large, juicy, red apple has a firm and crisp texture that provides ample sweetness and tartness, making it an excellent eating and baking apple. It is naturally slow to brown when cut and maintains its texture and flavor in storage for more than a year. The name, “Cosmic,” was chosen for the apple’s starburst-like lenticels that can be seen on the surface, resembling the cosmos. “Crisp” links to its parent, the Honeycrisp. This sweet, delicious, crisp apple will be harvested by growers throughout Washington for retail delivery in December 2019. For information and updates, visitwww.cosmiccrisp.com.
Quality Standards for Cosmic Crisp®
Based on test orchard research by the Washington State University (WSU) Apple Breeding program and Washington Tree Fruit Research Center (WTFRC), Proprietary Variety Management (PVM) and the Quality Standards Subcommittee for Cosmic Crisp® Brand Apples created strict quality standards to ensure that Cosmic Crisp® provides the best possible eating experience and delivers a consistent brand promise when it is distributed to retailers in December 2019.
Due to Cosmic Crisp®’s slow starch movement, growers will benefit from a long harvest window, from late September into the second week of October, depending upon orchard location. Additionally, Cosmic Crisp® only reaches full flavor development when the fruit has rested in storage for a period of time post-harvest. For the 2019 harvest, PVM mandates that fruit from third leaf trees can be sold in the fresh apple market no earlier than December 1, 2019, providing the fruit reaches a baseline starch reading of 5 on the Cosmic Crisp® starch scale. Fruit from second leaf trees becomes eligible for fresh market sales on or after January 1, 2020.
Cosmic Crisp® apples adhere to two grades in the debut season: Washington Extra Fancy (defined as 50% to full red color, clean from defects that detract from the grade) and Washington Fancy (defined as a color range of 30% red color and better, with defects as allowed by Washington Administrative Codes for Partial Red/Red Striped Apples). For the 2019 crop season, Washington Fancy grade fruit is allowed for sale only in a 40-pound tray pack carton. These standards, combined with the industry support, are intended to provide uniformity and consistency of presentation, regardless of the production facility that packs it.
About Crunch Pak®
Crunch Pak is the industry leader in fresh sliced apples. Founded in 2000, Crunch Pak is committed to providing the highest quality organic and conventional sliced apples in the market. Crunch Pak’s family of brands includes Crunch Pak with Disney, Crunch Pak with Nickelodeon, and Crunch Pak Organics. The primary distribution is via retail channels; annually Crunch Pak creates more than one billion apple slices at plants in Cashmere, Wash., and New Jersey. For more information, visit www.crunchpak.com.
About Litehouse, Inc.
Litehouse, Inc. is a leader in refrigerated salad dressings, dips, cheese, freeze dried herbs and other innovative and delicious products. Founded in Hope, Idaho, by the Hawkins family in 1963, Litehouse is proud to be a 100 percent employee-owned company. Each of the employee-owners is committed to providing great-tasting, high quality food made with real ingredients and crafted with care. Manufactured at the company’s five U.S. facilities based in Idaho, Michigan and Utah, Litehouse award-winning products are available in North America through general retail, e-commerce, foodservice, deli, club stores, and value-added goods such as meal and salad kits. For more information, visit www.litehousefoods.com, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.