News and insight for North America's fresh produce buyers
Carl Collen

BY CARL COLLEN

Hazel working well for apple packers

Apple groups across the US have reported lower breakdown, higher packouts and crisper flavour.

Hazel working well for apple packers

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Hazel Technologies has announced positive industry feedback on a version of its US Department of Agriculture-funded suite of technologies specifically designed for apples.

The Hazel for Apple technology works by reducing the respiration rate of apples prior to the storage process, one of the company's packaging solutions for fresh produce to extend shelf-life, increase sales, and fight food waste

Operators place the Hazel for apple sachet in a bin of apples following harvest and before storage, and Hazel said that feedback from the industry had been "positive across multiple production regions".

"The most important feature of the Hazel for Apple technology is the ease of use," said Brian Ruhoff, CFO at Wescott Orchards, a major Minnesota apple grower and part of global apple marketer Honeybear Brands. "It works great for the speed at which we fill rooms. (There is) no need to do partial applications. We get the same positive results with this new treatment."

“Using Hazel on our Honeycrisp apples resulted in reduced labour, increased safety for employees, easy applications of 1- MCP, and after 40 days of storage, a 90 per cent reduction of ethylene," said Scott Kee, vice-president. "Operations at Sacia Orchards It's a great technology I plan on using every season.”

“Apples are one of the pillars of the produce category," said Aidan Mouat, CEO at Hazel Technologies. "Our goal with Hazel for Apple was to provide both efficacy and extreme flexibility. Based on customer feedback, we are on the right path, and will continue to improve this technology to provide even more value for apple growers, packers, and retailers.”

Hazel Tech solutions revolve around the controlled release of active, shelf-life enhancing vapour from packaging materials.

Hazel sachets are placed in boxes of bulk produce by packers soon after the time of harvest, extending the shelf-life of produce up to three times by slowing aging in produce and preventing decay.

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