A study conducted at two Japanese orchards has found that climate change is causing apples to lose some of their crunch.
Published in Scientific Reports, the study analysed data gathered at orchards in Japan's Nagano and Aomori prefectures over a 40-year period between 1970 and 2010.
These orchards were selected as the cultivation and management practices there had remained consistent, ruling out the influence of these kind of factors on the fruit.
The study measured acid and sugar concentration levels, fruit firmness and watercore and determined that while acidity, firmness and warercore decreased, sugar concentration was rising.
This resulted in the conclusion that temperature changes were affecting apple taste and texture.
Co-author of the study Toshihiko Sugiura, also of the National Institute of Fruit Tree Science in Fujimoto, stated that while increased sweetness might be a positive consequence of temperature changes, the decrease in firmness presented a significant downside.