New climate-resistant variety is first branded fruit to be released from the Hot Climate Programme, a collaboration between scientists in New Zealand and Spain

New Zealand-based company VentureFruit has unveiled Tutti, the world’s first branded apple variety bred specifically for production in hot climates.

Twenty years in the making, Tutti’s commercial launch at Fruit Logistica in Berlin follows five years of extensive research and production trials under the variety name HOT84A1.

Morgan Rogers, VentureFruit’s general manager, described Tutti as a stand-out apple which meets both grower and consumer needs.

“With the world’s climate changing, it’s vital innovative new varieties are developed to withstand high temperatures and enable growers across all major continents to adapt and have sustainable businesses, while providing consumers with great tasting apples,” he commented, “and that’s what Tutti delivers.”

In Spain, for example, challenging growing conditions and extreme daytime temperatures of over 40 degrees, combined with warmer nights, make it difficult to grow apples.

“Tutti solves this challenge,” said Morgan. “It has been specifically bred to grow in hot conditions and produce a deliciously light crisp apple, with bright red skin and a rounded sweet fresh flavour. Tutti also grows successfully in different growing conditions, having been tested throughout Europe, including Italy, France, Germany, Switzerland and the UK.”

He added: “With today’s commercial launch of the variety, we now invite interested parties from across Europe to submit their interest in being a Tutti licence holder and growing this innovative new apple variety.”

Tuttti launch Fruit Logistica 2023

From left to right: T&G Global CEO Gareth Edgecombe, VentureFruit general manager Morgan Rogers, IRTA’s Josep Usall i Rodié and Gavin Ross of Plant & Food Research

Product pipeline

Tutti is the first apple brand to be released commercially by the Hot Climate Partnership (HCP), a collaboration between Spanish institute IRTA, New Zealand’s Plant & Food Research, Catalonian producer association Fruit Futur, and VentureFruit, a genetics and variety management business created by NZ multinational T&G Global.

HCP was founded in 2002 in response to challenges experienced by Spanish growers. Its specific aim is to develop new varieties of apples and pears and release them commercially. Initiated in 2002.

At present, it has an extensive pipeline of apple and pear varieties, 13 of which are now in their final years of evaluation and testing.

This includes consumer sensory research conducted across key markets to help shape the commercial proposition of each new variety.

Following the release of Tutti, VentureFruit expects to commercialise an additional five new apple and pear varieties over the next seven years, all of which have been specifically bred to be tolerant of hot climates.

A climate of collaboration

T&G Global’s chief executive Gareth Edgecombe said the strength of the unique HCP was its combined scientific, growing and commercialisation expertise.

“Addressing the potential impact of climate change on the world’s apple and pear sector is not something one business can do, it takes collaboration, knowledge sharing, commitment and a vision for what is possible,” he said.

“Through the dedication of our partnership and testing partners, the Hot Climate Partnership addresses both climate change mitigation and adaptation. Innovative varieties like Tutti can grow in warm and rising temperatures, while at the same time potentially help open up new growing regions which previously may have been unsuitable for growing apples and pears given their climatic conditions.

“It’s innovative solutions like Tutti that our sector needs to meet the evolving needs of our global consumers and customers, and ensure we continue to build a sustainable and resilient sector.”

Brand benefits

The brand name Tutti was chosen to underline the variety’s potential benefit to growers, who want more sustainable production, and to consumers, who want a great-tasting apple.

Kate James, business development manager at VentureFruit, said the name was also chosen to reflect the fun, fresh feeling of the eating experience, as well as the programme’s core concept.

“Tutti’s translation means ‘everyone’ or ‘all together’ in Italian, a concept at the very heart of the Hot Climate Partnership, which is delivering better solutions for growers, consumers and retailers,” she said.

“Its brand tagline ‘love every bite’ promises to meet the test of a great apple – how it tastes. With commercial plantings already underway, we can’t wait to see Tutti apples on retailers shelves.*

Tutti will be sold and marketed through a peer-to-peer network that allows participating third-party licence-holders to grow, market and sell the variety within their licensed territory according to agreed brand specifications.

The new variety is open for licensing to all growers, fresh produce sales and marketing companies, and plant nurseries.