Global warming is causing apples to lose crunch: study

A recent study has found that global warming is causing apples to lose some of their crunch.

The study which was published on Scientific Reports, analysed data gathered from 1970 to 2010 at two orchards in Japan and concluded that the change in global temperatures was having an effect on the taste and texture of apples, SMH reports.

The orchards chosen for the study were located in Japan’s Nagano and Aomori prefectures as the regions experienced no changes in cultivars or management practices for extended periods – ruling out any non-climatic factors which could influence the study.

The study measured levels of acid and sugar concentration, fruit firmness and watercore – a disease that causes water-soaked areas in an apple  – and found that while acidity, firmness and watercore decreased, the apples experienced a rise in sugar concentration.

Toshihiko Sugiura of the National Institute of Fruit Tree Science in Fujimoto and co-author of the study said that while the increased sweetness of the apple may serve as a positive attribute, the decrease in firmness is negative.

“We think most people like sweet and firm apple fruits, although everyone has his own taste. A soft apple is called 'Boke' in Japanese which means a dull or senile fruit," said Sugiura

[The results] "suggest that the taste and textural attributes of apples in the market are undergoing change from a long-term perspective, even though consumers might not perceive these subtle change."



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