Canadian company to introduce non-browning apples in US

A British Columbia-based biotechnology company is in the process of introducing into the US market, genetically modified apples that do not turn brown when sliced.

According to company president Neal Carter, an orchardist, the technology used by the company, Okanagan Specialty Fruits inhibits browning of apple flesh by turning off a gene that produces the enzyme polyphenol oxidase.

The company has developed non-browning Golden Delicious and Granny Smith apples for which it has applied to the US Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. The company's non-browning fruit is branded ''Arctic.''

Carter said the company was now working on Arctic Galas and Arctic Fujis.

Addressing fears over the addition of foreign genes, Carter said the company was not adding foreign DNA to the apples.

"We don't add any foreign genes and we aren't changing anything about the apple," Carter said.