I don’t want to eat zombies! It used to be that the apple industry was based upon creating industrial activity around the harvesting, processing, packing and shipping of apples, which grew in the sun and the wind. In those days, a red apple meant one that was sweet and grew out in the light. You could taste the sun. You could eat apples like that. See…
No Matter That There is No Ogopogo, Especially in Vernon, Pshaw
Especially one imitating Smaug.
Then things got out of hand. Eventually, the apple industry became the business of creating industrial apples, that were part of the sorting and packing and storage and marketing systems. They taste like plastic.
Each tree is a single stem, grafted to a dwarf rootstock that also gives jumbo-sized fruit, and is a carefully balanced creation of finely-measured fertilizers put through the watering system. No wonder they taste like plastic. As for the colour, well, all those fertilizers suck at bringing colour to fruit, which needs cool nights and lots of sun. See…
At this point they taste like crunchy sacks of rather bland water.
What is an industrial manager to do? Why, prune the branches off of the tree, all of them except for the ones at the top (those come off in the winter, to force sap flow in the spring, to get those large fruits), so that the sun hits the shoulders of the apples and makes them turn red day by day.
Yup, they turn red, and you know what? They taste like apples that were given 2 weeks of sun at the end of their time on the tree, not like ones that grew in the sun’s sweetness for a season. And here’s the thing: no one buys apples like that. It’s not worth it. They are only good enough for apple sauce, and you could grow sauce apples for 1/10th of the cost, with 10% fine red apples for people to eat growing on the outside of the tree. That this is not the contemporary model is just such a disappointment for a guy who just wants to eat an apple. And then along comes this guy …
Genetically altered apples that don’t turn brown? For God sakes, Neal, what about an apple that tastes like something? Neal says here on the Huffington Post that people buy apples with their eyes. Canada could use clearer thinking than that. The planet could use clearer thinking than that. People want apples to taste like something and when they don’t, they don’t go back. To hell with the eyes. People are looking for something, with their hearts. Industrial apple farming, that uses the byproducts of the chemical industry, blew it. And who invented the chemical industry?
Churchill and the Kaiser Before Their Men Started to Gas Each Other. Really, the Germans invented the whole chemical schmozzle. Sigh. I can say this. My family did its, sigh, part.
I call this post Zombie Apples because apples taste wonderful largely because of the hormones that evaporate from them in the first days or at most week or two after harvest. It’s the smell we taste. These fruity gasses evaporate from orchards and industrial storage facilities long before apples, even the stupid Arctic apple, hit the shelves. The result? The living dead! Any man who would sell you an apple stripped of flavour under the adage that you only want one that looks pretty is not a man you should trust. Trust the Kaiser. He had something in mind.
The Kaiser at the Kyffhäuser Monument, Harz Mountains, Germany
When the monument was opened in 1896, the military officers who were going to perfect the idea of gassing men took the train from Berlin with their wives, by the tens of thousands, and walked up the avenue in full ceremonial uniforms (and parasols for ladies) to the monument to the new monarchy. Along the way, there is a small monument, on which are set the words of the emperor, including these:
“I hope that this monument encourages the people to die for our new state.”
It looks like the whole world is going to die if we don’t stop this madness. I just want an apple to eat! If we keep on along the chemical model, humans will be an endangered species. The zombies will win. Neal, do the right thing. Chip those trees!