New Tasmanian apple variety enters Australian market
A new variety from Tasmania is set to hit the Australian market this year, ABC Australia reports.
The Southern Bliss is expected to debut in Australia this July. With a sweet flavor, the new cultivar hopes to charm local consumers in a market currently dominated by the Pink Lady variety with a 37% of consumption, the publication notes.
"We're really excited today to be doing our first commercial harvest of the Southern Bliss apple. Southern Bliss is our trademark variety," local grower Andrew Smith told ABC.
Smith is Australia’s biggest organic apple grower, and to date he’s planted 75,000 Southern Bliss trees in the Huon Valley, southern Tasmania. He is planning to grow up to 300,000.
Related articles: Southern Hemisphere pome fruit forecast cut following adverse weather
For Smith, the upcoming crop is the culmination of seven year’s work as licensing, quarantining and multiplying the trees is crucial to produce commercial volumes.
Now, it all comes down to “building confidence in the variety”, Smith says, so consumers will see it as competitive products,
Floods and hailstorms in late 2022 hindered supply in the eastern Australian states by damaging and even destroying crops.
Consequently, gross production is expected to be down almost 8% in 2023, with a total 290,000 tons projected, according to Apple and Pear Australia (APAL).
However, the organization expects prices to improve year-on-year as a smaller but higher quality crop enters the scene.