Iowa Public Television


Want a Sugar Rush? Eat Some Fruit...

posted on June 9, 2006

A professor of horticulture at the University of Arkansas has a fruitful idea in mind. John Clark is trying to create a better and sweeter blackberry.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Mr. Clark has been meticulously hand-pollinating blackberry flowers and creating cross-breeds that produce more of a firmer, thorn-free and sugary fruit.

The experiments are part of a sugar rush that is sweeping the produce aisles. These fruits are being bred to have lower levels of acid and higher levels of sugar, which is good news for fruit eaters with a sweet tooth.

However, some onlookers feel this is the latest example of catering to mass-market tastes. These critics say character and intricacy are steadily being bred out of fruit.

The new and sweeter fruit brands represent significant changes that are reshaping the $31.5 billion dollar U.S. fruit industry.

Ray Gerawan, Director of marketing at stone-fruit grower Gerawan Farming, says companies are focusing on producing sweeter fruit simply because it sells.

Tags: food news nutrition sugar