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Noted: The Business of Hybrid Fruit

Sep 13, 2011

by Chappell Ellison

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

I’ll take a nectarine any old day of the week. Even pluots, a plum-apricot mix, are delicious during the late summer. But I draw the line at Grapples. Since most grocery stores tend to stick to standard produce offerings, the hybrid fruit industry seems mysterious, conjuring images of scientists clad in lab coats, plopping seeds into fizzy beakers. But for the Zaiger family, hybrid fruit is a daily reality on their farm, where creating the pluerry — a plum-cherry crossbreed — has been an elusive, 50-year ordeal. Costing several decades and thousands of dollars, what is it about hybrid fruit that keeps farmers experimenting, knowing that even if they develop a variety, it might still be a flop with consumers?

For Floyd Zaiger, it’s almost completely about passion. After graduating with a degree in plant pathology, Floyd Zaiger became obsessed with fruit breeding during an apprenticeship with Fred Anderson, a man known as “the father of the nectarine.” Since then, the Zaiger family has developed over 100 varieties of fruit — 30 of which are peaches and nectarines. Though there are fast techniques, like messing with plant DNA, Zaiger keeps it low-tech. Once he finds a tree with a specific flavor that he likes, he collects its pollen with an eye shadow brush, then transfers it to the pistil of another tree. “We grow 50,000 crosses per year, and if we can get one (that works) out of every 10,000, we can break even,” Zaiger told The San Francisco Gate. But that’s not to say it isn’t profitable — for Zaiger’s most popular varietal, the pluot, growers pay a $2.25 royalty fee per tree, along with 15 percent of sales from their crop.

Zaiger’s goal is to make irresistible fruit with so much natural sugar, that a child would forsake candy. Though it might take something big to make us drop the Snickers in favor of one of Zaiger’s creations, the pluerry could be the start. After watching customers eat more than one bite at a recent tasting, Leith Gardner, one of Zaiger’s fruit breeders, thinks the pluerry has promise. “If they eat it down to the pit, you know it was a real winner,” says Gardner in an interview with the Wall Street Journal. The Zaigers will keep trying to predict the next big thing in fruit, even if it takes multiple decades. “No piece of fruit or tree is ever perfect,” Gardner adds. “There’s always things that Mother Nature is doing that needs to be improved upon.”

More Noted Posts | Plants and Edibles Category

4 Featured Comments

  • UltimateOrganicSoap

    UltimateOrganicSoap said 5 years ago Featured

    I am so hesitant to the creation of new, natural foods when there are thousands and thousands of viable vegitable and plant seeds that are no longer used and only exist in seed banks, waiting for some climatic/political/economical catastrophy to bring them into use again. It's frightening to think that hundreds of apple species have disappeared in the last 50-100 years, as well as pears, beans, corn.... really almost any type of vegetable. I am truly concerned about nutrition in-take for our future generations as more and more of the food given to us by Nature/God/The Universe vanishes. It makes me very happy that such produce cannot be legally sold in my country.

  • Winstonthefrenchie

    Winstonthefrenchie said 5 years ago Featured

    I happen to be a horticulturist and couldn't disagree more with last statement that we need to improve on mother nature. Fruits and vegetables non-hybridized, not covered with insecticides, fungisides etc. are always better for you than their counterpart. Many, not all growers are making new fruits and vegetables not for their taste but for how well that they travel in 18 wheelers packed for weeks at time so that they get to you in perfect shape. There are seeds out there that are not hybridized that can still be grown. Best place to buy your produce is local and for it to be organic. My son will not eat brocc. or cauliflower unless it came from our garden. He will not eat eggs from the store either, only the ones from our hens. Like the seedless watermelon, I have yet to find one that tastes as sweet as a seeded one.

  • PruAtelier

    PruAtelier said 5 years ago Featured

    In today's world of "frankenfoods' I would would think of hybridization as just that but it is not. Hybridization - cross pollination - has been going on for centuries with roses, etc. and it cannot be compared to the laboratory specimens that have their DNA mixed with completely different species such as mixing plant and fish.....UGH! That being said, hybridization often does not capture the characteristic taste and scent that belongs to the original and results in a tasteless and scentless but sometimes a surprisingly beautiful product!

  • bunnywithatoolbelt

    bunnywithatoolbelt said 5 years ago Featured

    I completely underscore smallfly's comment. My family has grown citrus in California for decades and I still remember my grandfather's fascination with hybrids. It was a hobby for him, much like some choose bonsai or flower arranging--they are all ways that humans and nature can interact relatively safely (not saying the plants like being cut and arranged!) I was just reading about pluots and their "inventor." enjoy! http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/06/12/MNOF1JR7JK.DTL

85 comments

  • TwinkleStarCrafts

    TwinkleStarCrafts said 5 years ago

    Is it possible to engineer these hybrids to include more anti-oxidants?

  • tarikyousef

    tarikyousef said 5 years ago

    I gre up eating traditional fuits and enjoying them as if they were candy. These days I have to be cautious in the grocery store because locally here in Ohio I keep running into hybrid fruit that simply does not taste as good as regular fruit. Often I find that it is overly watery and sweet, yet it lacks all the great flavors I grew up loving in fruit. It scares me that some day I may not be able to find a regular peach in the grocery store. At a recent farmers market a man was sellling fresh peaches and the flavor is something I have not tasted since I was a kid, seems like even run of the mill Peaches have lost thier essence.

  • VivaGailBeads

    VivaGailBeads said 5 years ago

    i want a pluerry!

  • AzureLaine

    AzureLaine said 5 years ago

    Antioxidants are naturally present in all produce, so forming hybrids may or may not increase the antioxidant power. They give plants their color (including white, which we often assume is the absence of color). Plants with deep, or saturated color are generally high in antioxidants.

  • Mclovebuddy

    Mclovebuddy said 5 years ago

    i never got the grapple. though i like grape tomatoes, they're similar in sweetness to the cherry tomato 1000 - not spliced, but i can't say whether they were muted or simply hybridized with another type of tomato. there are serious considerations when looking at genetically modified food (great ape and cauliflower - completely unrelated plants) especially in regards to potential allergies and the potential damage to native or more naturally derived hybrids (cherry and almond - related plants) or mutations (natural mutation within the plant type itself).

  • PariDesign

    PariDesign said 5 years ago

    So interesting. I love sour apples and water melon with seeds! I hope they won't be gone forever one day.

  • VeraVague

    VeraVague said 5 years ago

    tampering with nature scares me.

  • jackandjillwedding

    jackandjillwedding said 5 years ago

    So cool. I'd like a stranana (strawberry banana) please. It will go great with smoothies.

  • UltimateOrganicSoap

    UltimateOrganicSoap said 5 years ago Featured

    I am so hesitant to the creation of new, natural foods when there are thousands and thousands of viable vegitable and plant seeds that are no longer used and only exist in seed banks, waiting for some climatic/political/economical catastrophy to bring them into use again. It's frightening to think that hundreds of apple species have disappeared in the last 50-100 years, as well as pears, beans, corn.... really almost any type of vegetable. I am truly concerned about nutrition in-take for our future generations as more and more of the food given to us by Nature/God/The Universe vanishes. It makes me very happy that such produce cannot be legally sold in my country.

  • silversamba

    silversamba said 5 years ago

    I, too, miss watermelon with seeds PariDesign! alana

  • AliKan

    AliKan said 5 years ago

    We love the opportunity to taste all these wonderful fruits but here in the U.K it isn't very popular against the traditional fruits meaning they are not sold in many places.

  • TheIDconnection

    TheIDconnection said 5 years ago

    I grew up on 100 acre farm in Zanesville Ohio, we had orchards, gardens with all the veggies, we canned, made jelly etc... I'm 50 now and the fruit in grocery stores does not taste the same. Yes, things have really changed.

  • paramountvintage

    paramountvintage said 5 years ago

    i love this article. almost all produce that we currently eat is a hybrid. even potatoes have evolved. this is nothing new but is always interesting :)

  • AliceCloset

    AliceCloset said 5 years ago

    Hybrid fruits are interesting, but "Normal" fruits are better!

  • myvintagecrush

    myvintagecrush said 5 years ago

    Franken-fruit! Aaaah!

  • ikabags

    ikabags said 5 years ago

    Yes interesting ! When i was a child always i had fresh and delicious fruit from trees . I know lots of things changed but really i m missing that time .

  • aBreathofFrenchair

    aBreathofFrenchair said 5 years ago

    I grew cucumbers this year and one kind had rather large round cucumbers. A few weeks ago I cut one open and it was a cantaloupe inside....orange color and all! It smelled just like a cantaloupe!

  • katlantis

    katlantis said 5 years ago

    As a girl who loves her pluots in the summer, I'm all for this hybridization of fruit! As long as it's done naturally with methods like Zaiger's, doesn't it seem like a great way to take advantage of the gifts mother nature offers?

  • MootiDesigns

    MootiDesigns said 5 years ago

    Interesting article. Thanks for sharing!

  • followingfireflies

    followingfireflies said 5 years ago

    i disagree with the last sentence in the article =(

  • CarryTheWord

    CarryTheWord said 5 years ago

    Another vote for watermelon with seeds!

  • CherieMay

    CherieMay said 5 years ago

    Fascinating article. And awesome cover photo.

  • NorthwestBridal

    NorthwestBridal said 5 years ago

    I much prefer to not put anything in my body that has been altered by man from it's natural state. We just shouldn't mess with nature. Nature works in perfect harmony until humans decide they need to make things 'better' and end up destroying things.

  • elleestpetite

    elleestpetite said 5 years ago

    The idea is interesting and I'm all for it if the outcome is deliciousness. Scientists have been altering vegetables for years, why not fruit? I mean, isn't that why we have wonderful seedless grapes and watermelon?

  • rachiegirl2

    rachiegirl2 said 5 years ago

    grapples not really a hybrid fruit. They are just Fuji apples soaked in grape concentrate.

  • MerCurios

    MerCurios said 5 years ago

    What the heck is a grapple - grape and apple hybrid?? I love grapes and apples, however, both need to be crisp. I can only begin to imagine the flavor and texture of them combined. I'm willing to try anything once. Twice if I like it. Three times if it's good! ;) ...come to think of it shallots are hybrid too, aren't they?

  • StarShineVintage

    StarShineVintage said 5 years ago

    Can my regular delicious apple be Hybrid to run faster, jump higher, outsmart, and last longer than any other apple out there? Flowers are Hybrid to develope unique shapes, deeper color, and color combinations...but I have noticed that many of these Hybrid flowers have no fragrance, such as Hybrid Lilacs. Lilacs are one of most favorite smells in the world, yet the deep purple Hybrid ones have no smell at all. Maybe it is the same with fruits, they loose their essence. Mother Nature Does it best Watermelons with seeds are the best:)

  • HoneysuckleLane

    HoneysuckleLane said 5 years ago

    According to the video on the Grapple link, Grapples are just apples infused with grape flavor after they are picked, therefore not a hybrid fruit. I wouldn't mind trying them although I'm not sure if I'd like the mix.

  • ballandchain

    ballandchain said 5 years ago

    Frankenfruit!

  • ballandchain

    ballandchain said 5 years ago

    seriously though, why aren't they crossing strawberries with chocolate?

  • iktomi

    iktomi said 5 years ago

    I love pluots! I agree with the above poster that if no genetic engineering is done, and it's all just a brush and pollen, then I'm ok with it. I do think it's because of the food industry and it's blanding of the fruit available in our stores, that we have the appearance of these hybrid fruits at all. If the original still tasted good, we wouldn't need a tasty hybrid.

  • LittleWrenPottery

    LittleWrenPottery said 5 years ago

    I too think Grapples are just a step too far! it's funny how much 'new' fruit you see in shops I'm sure there's plenty out there yet to be discovered...

  • fortheloveofzebra

    fortheloveofzebra said 5 years ago

    Interesting article! Made me visit Wikipedia to learn more!

  • KettleConfections

    KettleConfections said 5 years ago

    This is very fascinating, I never knew it takes so many trial and errors to cross pollinate and produce a new type of fruit that can be successfully harvested, this definitely give me a whole new appreciation of the ubiquitous dinosaur fruit!

  • mylenefoster

    mylenefoster said 5 years ago

    I hope it looks good as it looks. Some of the fruit coming out nowadays are so lacking in flavor though they look good on the shelves. It's such a letdown.

  • ladonnae

    ladonnae said 5 years ago

    i agree - i DO NOT like the last sentence either - weird - no wonder so many people are sick now - go figure. Improved??? Sigh

  • Winstonthefrenchie

    Winstonthefrenchie said 5 years ago Featured

    I happen to be a horticulturist and couldn't disagree more with last statement that we need to improve on mother nature. Fruits and vegetables non-hybridized, not covered with insecticides, fungisides etc. are always better for you than their counterpart. Many, not all growers are making new fruits and vegetables not for their taste but for how well that they travel in 18 wheelers packed for weeks at time so that they get to you in perfect shape. There are seeds out there that are not hybridized that can still be grown. Best place to buy your produce is local and for it to be organic. My son will not eat brocc. or cauliflower unless it came from our garden. He will not eat eggs from the store either, only the ones from our hens. Like the seedless watermelon, I have yet to find one that tastes as sweet as a seeded one.

  • AriaCouture

    AriaCouture said 5 years ago

    I agree with UltimateOrganicSoap. There are more fruits and veggies than any one person on this planet could ever sample. This makes me hesitant to embrace any new hybrids. Also Grapples are apples sprayed with a grape scent. Red the small print on the container. It's not a hybrid of a fruit. “There’s always things that Mother Nature is doing that needs to be improved upon.” That is disturbing. Our meddling with nature has resulted in people not getting sicker and super-bugs and super-bacteria. We need to stop messing with nature. e need to stop genetically modifying eveything. GMOs are so common in our food supply that the FDA has decided we don't need to be told so on packaging. Companies like Monsanto are raking in the green, and what benefit do the rest of us receive? Sicker and fatter, so much that we not accept obesity and ill health as normal and make arguments that being obese and ill is just as healthy as anyone else. Sad that we have to lie to ourselves.

  • smallfly

    smallfly said 5 years ago

    There is a difference between genetically engineered hybrids and hybrids that are simply cross pollinated. While genetic engineering forces changes that often cause problems, cross pollination has been used by farmers for thousands of years. Plants that are similar in species can cross pollinate on their own in nature. The method described here (with the brush) is just a way of making the specific desired combination, much like breeding two different types of dog together in order to achieve desired traits. So while genetically altered food often is a problem, some hybrids can be quite natural and delicious.

  • SockMonkeysRock

    SockMonkeysRock said 5 years ago

    that pic is SO cool!! ;)

  • squibbles76

    squibbles76 said 5 years ago

    I love the grapple! You have to take the first bite with your eyes open. Then close your eyes....it so confuses the brain. lol. I loved that experience, but the costs of multiple experiences would get expensive. I would love a plum cherry, but really all you have to do is eat a prickly pear fruit to get that combination. ;)

  • PageantCouture

    PageantCouture said 5 years ago

    Love love this picture!!! Very creative!

  • littleshopofphotos

    littleshopofphotos said 5 years ago

    Very interesting article!! Love this info!!

  • penyadesignshop2

    penyadesignshop2 said 5 years ago

    sounds yummy, thanks for sharing!

  • HyacintheandHazel

    HyacintheandHazel said 5 years ago

    Grapples aren't even a hybrid fruit...

  • weezieduzzit

    weezieduzzit said 5 years ago

    I'm afraid I'd have to avoid a "fruit with so much natural sugar, that a child would forsake candy." While natural sugars are certainly a better choice than processed sugars, they are still to be eaten in moderation. Articles like this make me want to turn even more of the backyard and front yard than I already have into garden beds to grow even more as-nature-intended-them-to-be non-hybrid, open pollinated foods.

  • PruAtelier

    PruAtelier said 5 years ago Featured

    In today's world of "frankenfoods' I would would think of hybridization as just that but it is not. Hybridization - cross pollination - has been going on for centuries with roses, etc. and it cannot be compared to the laboratory specimens that have their DNA mixed with completely different species such as mixing plant and fish.....UGH! That being said, hybridization often does not capture the characteristic taste and scent that belongs to the original and results in a tasteless and scentless but sometimes a surprisingly beautiful product!

  • bunnywithatoolbelt

    bunnywithatoolbelt said 5 years ago Featured

    I completely underscore smallfly's comment. My family has grown citrus in California for decades and I still remember my grandfather's fascination with hybrids. It was a hobby for him, much like some choose bonsai or flower arranging--they are all ways that humans and nature can interact relatively safely (not saying the plants like being cut and arranged!) I was just reading about pluots and their "inventor." enjoy! http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/06/12/MNOF1JR7JK.DTL

  • AlpineGypsy

    AlpineGypsy said 5 years ago

    I think these are my feelings on the subject: Cross-polination the old-fashioned, labor-intensive way ROCKS! GMO stuff SUCKS! But I think we can all agree: Fresh fruit growing is subject to the whims of Nature, and we are the Guinea Pigs. Bring it on!!! YUMMMM YUM YUM!!!

  • Iammie

    Iammie said 5 years ago

    Interesting! I'd like strapple. :)

  • ConfettiWestern

    ConfettiWestern said 5 years ago

    I don't believe I have eaten a hybrid fruity...but fruits certainly are some of my favorite things

  • sarlesnatalya

    sarlesnatalya said 5 years ago

    cool picture

  • jungledread

    jungledread said 5 years ago

    Agreed! That franken-fruit sure caught my eye

  • katrinaalana

    katrinaalana said 5 years ago

    I guess the more natural hybrid method is ok. The procedure described where they use a brush to remove pollen is ok. I'm not progenetically modified foods though. Not a fan of frankenfood!

  • laylaoz

    laylaoz said 5 years ago

    sometimes anybody doing a woman without head...will be the passion of most of men! :)

  • lulusmuse

    lulusmuse said 5 years ago

    Europe has it right with outlawing GMO foods. I wish USA would wise up, too. My strawberries don't need to be crossed with cold water fish DNA so they resist frost. There is no way that GMO foods are good for us. Cross-pollination - no problem. Sometimes the more labor-some way is best. Kind of like handmade vs. mast-production. I will pick handmade any day.

  • allcraftsharing

    allcraftsharing said 5 years ago

    I'm interested in hybrid fruits.I want to know how it taste.I think it's fine If I eat them a little. BTW I live at Thailand and I never found hybrid fruits available here.

  • sandboxcastle

    sandboxcastle said 5 years ago

    You know...the fruit i buy from farmers market are ripe and delicious- I'd take one of them over a candy bar anyday. Unfortunately the farmer's market is once a week...so I think the real problem is that mass produced grocery store fruit does not taste good- NOT that there aren't fruit out there already yummy enough to tempt a kid from candy. That being said... I'd be up for trying a Pluerry some day :)

  • recycledwares

    recycledwares said 5 years ago

    I hate to discourage anyone from experimenting with science, so more power to the Floyd, but I do have to say that I don't like it when ppl start genetically modifying foods for human or animal consumption. I am sure it will have an affect on the human body down the road, and I don't want to be the guinea.

  • Fashionitsa

    Fashionitsa said 5 years ago

    I'm skeptical. Haven't we messed enough with nature?

  • Pillowation

    Pillowation said 5 years ago

    Grapples are not a hybrid of apples and grape, they are just Washingron Extra Fancy Apples flawoured with grape (grape concentrate and water). But if we talking about hybrids, I'm not sure they are safe, except hybrids of close species.

  • MossMountain

    MossMountain said 5 years ago

    As long as it is in the same fruit family, cross breeding fruit is natural ... It's the same as one breed of dog breeding with another. It happens in nature already, so why shouldn't farmers experiment?

  • Blinkett

    Blinkett said 5 years ago

    I think a lot of our produce in the stores taste horrible nowadays because they are not fresh and are shipped green from remote locations. Fresh fruit at the farmers market or picked yourself still taste wonderful. As for hybridization most of our fruit is from naturally selected hybrids over many generations. I don't mind new varieties of fruit as long as they are fresh and taste good not like the broccoflower (yuck).

  • sarahdormio

    sarahdormio said 5 years ago

    Something that we need to remember is that the food industry docent care about anty oxidents and more vitamins all they care about is money. So why do we need make hybrid food? Cant we let nature be nature?

  • BonChatBoutique

    BonChatBoutique said 5 years ago

    Please let the mangoes of yesteryear stay the mango I grew up loving...

  • MishaGirl

    MishaGirl said 5 years ago

    Now if they could somehow cross a cherry tree with cocoa bean bush and make it super sweet so it tastes like chocolate covered cherries....I might actually want to try that ;-)....otherwise, I really like fruit the way nature intended. But that's just me!

  • evilfishdesign

    evilfishdesign said 5 years ago

    Ugh, One of my favorite things is to get a fruit with seeds and plant it to get another small tree or something to throw in my shop/home. Now you're lucky if you can find something that isn't seedless just because farmers don't want other people to have the ability they do. I'll stick with natural farmers-market fruits/veggies. And Imperfection is perfection... Nature is beautiful as it. Let's not muck it up more :(

  • OnlyOriginalsByAJ

    OnlyOriginalsByAJ said 5 years ago

    I live in STL, which is the headquarters for Monsanto. I'm a big supporter of the work that Monsanto does, so it always amazes me how many people protest outside of the main enterance. I just don't understand. Monsanto is working so hard to create new hybrid foods and increase food supplies to stop world hunger...what's so bad about that? Thanks for sharing! I'm so glad to see so many other people supporting hybrid foods :)

  • CassiasGarden

    CassiasGarden said 5 years ago

    Very very interesting. Love these kinds of articles! Thank you!

  • hoganfe

    hoganfe said 5 years ago

    I steer clear of frankenfoods.

  • TheScarfTree

    TheScarfTree said 5 years ago

    I agree with you.....where do you draw the line! Just a bit weird, but interesting - give them some time and that they will eventually appear to have been around forever, then where does our debate start? :)

  • ALookOfLove

    ALookOfLove said 5 years ago

    tasteless and scentless, YES!!! I completely agree!! And I also agree with Winston.... I, too, couldn't disagree more with the last statement, “There’s always things that Mother Nature is doing that needs to be improved upon.” I think Mother Nature pretty much has "organic" under control!! I just want to taste a tomato again :( Not the kind that's been engineered to survive an 18 hour (or longer!) truck ride, and not one that's "bigger, better, redder!" Just a tomato please. Yes, that little one with the spot on it. Thank you. ~Mary

  • BanglewoodSupplies

    BanglewoodSupplies said 5 years ago

    I just don't trust it!

  • dreamcrane

    dreamcrane said 5 years ago

    Very interesting. Love this articles!

  • Thewomblequeen

    Thewomblequeen said 5 years ago

    Very interesting article..As a I've been raised in an old farm, we learned that there is different seasons and a time for everything. There was no strawberries in march nor peaches for christmas and our grapes had seeds. But with supermarkets and fast food, people have forgotten about nature and want anything at anytime, we can find fairtrade bananas in plastic wrapping, which have traveled thousands of miles, best before on potatoes and frozen peeled papayas. The problem with fruit engineering and modified organism, is that they are created by ourselves and our ever growing consumerism. People need to get in touch with nature to realize, sooner than later.Thanks Raphaela

  • KissedByCows

    KissedByCows said 5 years ago

    The issue with bioengineered food (otherwise known as GMOs) is forcing DNA from different organisms that would never happen in nature. You will never see a fish and a flower mate and produce offspring. The potential for allergies is great. No long-term studies have been done by the FDA or USDA, and those government entities say that they won't do long-term studies because the companies, such as Monsanto, among others, claim that long-term studies don't need to be done. Since when do companies tell the government whether their product is safe? Another issue is that the genetic diversity has been destroyed. For each strain that the company sells, all those plants are clones of each other. The fact that they cannot control the spread of the bioengineered DNA to other plants is another issue. One of my personal issues with GMO DNA is that in order to force their signature DNA into the existing DNA, the DNA of bacteria is also used. The yield difference between traditional seed and the bioengineered seed is only 10%. GMOs will not stop world hunger, people actively going out to these communities, building clean-water sources, and teaching sustainable agriculture. If you yourself cannot or are unwilling to go, then donate to non-profits that do go. One last word, the biggest thing going to GMOs is that you can spray your pesticides (that, coincidently, you bought from the same company you bought your seed from) and sit back; you don't need to pull weeds or use other measures for pest management.

  • KissedByCows

    KissedByCows said 5 years ago

    I just wanted to add that I'm not against hybrid plants. Most fruits and vegetables we eat are hybrids; many of our favorite apples come from cross-pollinating two different types of apple. My issue lies in messing with DNA in a laboratory.

  • JensMetals

    JensMetals said 5 years ago

    My grandfather was a professional plant breeder. He created many well known and delicious varieties of tomato, squash, cucumber, etc. All of his varieties were created through cross pollination, something that has been occurring naturally as long as pollen producing plants have existed. My Grandfather abhorred the idea of GMOs, he thought the plants DNA should be left alone. Cross pollination is a proven, effective, and safe way of creating new varieties of plants. Even the heirloom tomato varieties were created that way back in the day. If cross pollination didn't exist, we might not have tomatoes at all.

  • CottonSeason

    CottonSeason said 5 years ago

    what is wrong with oranges, apples, plums etc? what is it that makes you want to mess with the perfect fruits that mother nature has already created for us? its not like there isnt enough varieties and tastes out there to keep us satisfied! and in my opinion you will never create a fruit that will make a child who is used to eating lots of sweets choose the fruit over the sweets because that is what they are used to and that is a parenting problem not a fruit problem. There are plenty of children out there now who love to eat fresh fruit apples etc and they dont need hybrid fruits.

  • closetvintage

    closetvintage said 5 years ago

    OnlyOriginalsbyAJ - how can you possibly say you support Monsanto?? You need to get more info - they are pretty much raping the planet and screwing over the farmers every day... and making us sick for a profit to boot. O my, didn't mean to jump on a soap box, but i get upset about food and nature and the wrird link to Big Pharma. Yes, i agree cross pollination is one thing, and GMO another. Great photo, interesting article, and even more interesting posts. Peace and love to all..

  • Exaltation

    Exaltation said 5 years ago

    Also hybrid fruit sugars interact with the body differently than non-hybrid fruit sugars. Hybrid tends to spike ones blood sugar, leading to a little crash later, much the same way that refined sugar does, but to a lesser extent. People who are diabetic or hypoglycemic, just be aware! :) A good rule of thumb to know if you're eating something hybrid (besides having a funky name like pluot or grapple) is whether the fruit has viable seeds. For example, pineapples and bananas have had their seeds bred and hybridized out of them. Same with some varieties of watermelon. Best to eat fruit that you could plant and watch grow, if you wanted.

  • SweetiePieCollars

    SweetiePieCollars said 5 years ago

    I used to work during the Produce Marketing Association's big tradeshow every year, and they always had a special exhibitor who produced, about, 50 different hybrid fruits! It was so much fun to look at! But I never got to eat them. :-(

  • SweetiePieCollars

    SweetiePieCollars said 5 years ago

    And ps. Monsanto is a monster.

  • reflectionsjewelry

    reflectionsjewelry said 5 years ago

    Hmmm...interesting and controversial....but I'd still like to try a pluerry!

  • MonkeyBusinessBeadin

    MonkeyBusinessBeadin said 5 years ago

    @ everyone who thinks that the food they eat is "natural". It's not. Just as one example, corn was originally a grain, and was nothing even close to the corn we consider "natural" today. The same thing goes for nearly any fresh item you purchase in grocery stores. They have all been modified by man in one way or another. We, as humans, mold things around us so that they will conform to what we need. It's not necessarily a bad thing! We need to open our minds to items that are being manipulated in a natural way, and be more wary of things being altered in a genetic way.

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