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Cross between Honeycrisp and MonArk

Newest apple variety Rave

The University of Minnesota has chosen Rave™ as the brand name for fruit sold from the University’s newest apple variety, MN55, which Stemilt Growers holds the license to grow, pack, and market in North America. 

“We are beyond excited about the chosen brand name of our newest star apple. The Rave™ apple has explosive flavor and with its early harvest timing and dessert qualities, it will reinvent the month of August for the apple category. We look forward to bringing small volumes of Rave™ apples to market in 2017,” said Stemilt marketing director Roger Pepperl.

The highest quality fruit from MN55 trees will go to market from Stemilt growers as Rave™ apples beginning in summer 2017. MN55 is a variety that was born back in 1997 at the University of Minnesota’s apple breeding program, the same place that the now national phenomenon Honeycrisp heralds from. It’s a cross between Honeycrisp and an unreleased variety called MonArk. With similar, yet more defined, flavor and quality attributes as Honeycrisp combined with MonArk’s ability to ripen early yet color well and maintain a crisp, juicy texture through the summer heat, Stemilt believes Rave™ apples will be the next standout in the produce department.

The journey to develop a new apple cultivar is not a quick process and requires great efforts. During the 17 years from original breeding to the final release and licensing of MN55 to Stemilt, the University of Minnesota conducted rigorous testing to ensure that the variety was of high enough quality to be commercially released. This process included 5-6 years of testing at multiple locations across the U.S. Together with Stemilt, the University of Minnesota landed on Rave™ as the brand name for the apple earlier this summer.

“We are constantly seeking new apple varieties with flavors and qualities that will wow the consumer. It’s all about building fruit fans of tomorrow, and Rave™ certainly has the ‘wow factor’ to do just that. We can’t wait to bring this phenomenal apple into stores next August,” said Pepperl. 

Stemilt is now in the process of developing a logo and packaging for Rave™ apples, and expects to unveil a look later this year.

Brianna Shales
Communications Manager
Stemilt Growers

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