B.C. apples turned in another great performance last month, this time at the Western Canadian Agribition in Regina.
Unlike the National Apple Competition at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair in Toronto, where Okanagan apples captured the top spots in all three categories in October, there were no competition prizes at the agribition. Nonetheless, they were winning the hearts of visitors to the fair, according to Glen Lucas, general manager of the B.C. Fruit Growers Association.
Lucas was attending the fair with a team that included the association’s president Jeet Dukhia, pressing the flesh and pressing apple samples on passersby.
Often, said Lucas, a person will tell them something like “I only eat Gala,” but after trying a sample of Ambrosia or Honeycrisp soon change their tune to “I have a new favourite.”
“We also sell apples as a service to the attendees. This year we sold 5,000 pounds of apples and completely sold out of the Ambrosia that we took along,” said Lucas. “We had a few boxes of the Granny Smith and donated those to a local food bank.”
This is the third year the BCFGA has had a booth to taste test and promote B.C. apples at the Western Canadian Agribition and Lucas said that despite cold weather and a record snowfall in Regina, the traffic at the booth was as high as in previous years.
“They love the apples,” said Lucas, “it’s exciting to see.”
Okanagan apples also scored high at the Royal National Exhibition, taking home prizes in almost every category.