Apple Scrap

Today’s post comes from Dr. Larry Kyle, founder and produce manager at Genway – the supermarket for genetically engineered foods.


When I started Genway more than 20 years ago, my goal was to use genetic engineering to open the door to new food worlds where we all could live happier, or at least more interesting, lives.

In the process, I’ve fought for my vision against the stubborn rule-following of investors, Congressional committees, scientific oversight panels, torch mobs, mothers, tree huggers and Luddite scolds.


Usually, I’ve won.

That’s how the world gained Screaming Pumpkins, Cobrananas, Living Toast and Lightning Bug Tomatoes! My creations are all special. They bring something to the food that was not there before – something taboo, something that feels a little bit crazy! That’s the true benefit of my primary scientific strategy – something I call the “Why Not Method.” It has led us to a bold new frontier where our food has the potential not only to grow, but to develop its own talents, add to its skills and abilities, and indulge its ambitions.

It’s a very American approach.

That’s why I’m so discouraged to see news like this – the United States has OK’d a Canadian grown, genetically modified apple that does not turn brown when you cut it open.

That’s it?
That’s it!

All that science, just to get a timid food that does NOT do something! I’m crushed!

It reminds me of a challenge I was once given by a church pastor from the Florida Everglades who wrote to say his congregation was praying for me because I am “messing with creation” to suit my own whims. He reasoned that I am selfish because nothing made by God can be improved.

That’s when I brought up Adam. As a fundamentally flawed apple-biter, Adam’s tendencies introduce a huge problem into the God-built system that has never been fixed.

He admitted that if I could use genetic engineering to “hack” the Garden of Eden story and alter the outcome, that would be a change that God would have to rubber stamp. He took it back to his congregation and suddenly they were full of bright ideas!

“Make apples ugly”, said one.
“Take away the crunch,” offered another.
“Shrink them to the size of raisins,” said a third.

Interestingly, nobody wanted to change Adam. All their attention was focused on the apple. OK, I guess, but these these ideas seemed rather passive to me because they only take things away. Where’s the action? The sizzle? The thrill of something new?

Instead, I went into the lab with some DNA taken from the Indian Gray Mongoose, and I gave them a nice Granny Smith that bites snakes! Not because it wants to, just because it can!

It also tastes a little gamy.

They still pray for me down there, but every year they also ask me to send a bushel of Genway Adams Apples to throw into the swamp that surrounds their church!

Like I’ve always said, genetically engineered foods can make the world better. Or at least different!

Yours in Unsupervised Experimentation,
Dr. Larry Kyle

What’s your favorite kind of apple?

31 thoughts on “Apple Scrap”

  1. A laptop. This is most certainly true.
    It’s true, it’s no the Old Adam we seek to change. Speaking of change, I got so excited by this post that, well I need to change my depends, my mind, and my habits.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Good morning. I like two of the older apple varieties; Jonathans and Macintosh. I don’t know which one is my first choice. They are both sweet and crunchy. They were two the most commonly available apples years ago and they are still sometimes found in grocery stores.


  3. My grandpa had a few Northern Spy apple trees, which I really liked. The apples were tart and crisp and baked up well, as I recall. I like Granny Smiths, but I have been disappointed with them for the past few years. I think the first ones I had were from New Zealand and they were wonderful.


  4. Cortlands are my absolute favorites. They seem to be one of the few still-seasonal apples–I can find them for just a few weeks in the autumn, and then they’re gone. My roommate loves a new apple I’d never heard of, Sonjas, which for some bizarre reason we can only find at Target. So far I remain unimpressed by Honeycrisp, Zestar, and the other new hybrids. Roommate claims that Red Delicious have turned the corner and once again taste like something other than juicy styrofoam, but I’m dubious.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I have a friend in St. Paul who has several apple trees, and he generously shares them with me. They are the best. Just about any apple – picked fresh from the tree – will beat any grocery store variety. Of Philip’s apples I like the Zestar the best.

    In Denmark there’s a variety of apple called Pigeon. It’s a small, dark red apple with pure white flesh. It’s available only at Christmas time. It’s sweet, crisp and juicy; a real treat that I haven’t had in many years. I think that apple is every Danish kids favorite, it certainly was mine.


  6. Honeycrisp, although I’m not a big apple eater, nor an apple-polisher, nor an apple-a-day-keeps-the-doctor-away kind of guy, nor a “mom, baseball, and apple pie” kind of guy–except for baseball and mom (hi mom!) *waves at the TV camera*

    And I doubt I’m an ‘apple of his/her eye’ person either–too many scars, broken facial bones, and screwed up teeth alignment to be someone anyone wants to look at for very long. However, I’m a big advocate of understanding “apples vs oranges” comparisons. Unfortunately, with the recent explosion of apple varieties available in the grocery store, much more time is needed for the A.v. O. comparisons because apples have different strengths and weaknesses.

    Finally, despite being a PC user all my computer life, my wife foisted an Apple iPhone upon me late in 2013 and I reluctantly use that product when required for communication or prudent safety.

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Morning–
    I have an apple every day.
    We only buy organic apples as I’m bothered by the amount of chemicals sprayed on regular apples. Mostly I eat Honeycrisp. And if they’re out of season we eat Braeburn.
    When I was growing up we had several apple trees in the backyard. But it was the Macintosh tree I live in. I must have lived on apples for a few years there it seems. I was heartbroken when the tree finally died off.
    I planted another Macintosh and a honeycrisp a few years ago. Had 8 apples on the Mac last fall.
    Anyone have helpful hints on growing organic apples– and, more importantly, storing them??

    There’s a new apple, the ‘Pazazz’ that was in the news a few weeks ago. We tried them (even though they’re not organic yet) and they were pretty good.


    1. I haven’t had much luck or experience with apples. They do have many pests and diseases that create problems for organic producers. However, some people must know how to produce organic apples because they are available.

      One of the first things you should do is to be sure to dispose of fallen apples and any apples you don’t eat to prevent the carry over of insect pests to the next year. There are some organically certified insecticides and fungicides you could use if you are having problems. Cut out and dispose of any damaged or diseased parts of the trees.

      Follow good production practices to help the trees resist pests and diseases. If you are having a problem with a disease or pest, find someone who can tell you the name of the pest or disease and then look up information about that pest or disease.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Greetings! My husband refuses to let an Apple in the house, even though he hates Microsoft software as well. There’s just no pleasing him ….

    Such fun to see a post from Dr Larry Kyle — I do miss him. I don’t agree with him, but you can’t fault his passion for what he does. I am partial to Honeycrisp and Braeburn. Like the sweet and crisp combination, but Red Delicious is too much. We were very lucky to have several apple trees in our yard growing up. There were several varieties, but I mainly remember the Red Delicious, Macintosh and a Yellow Transparent (I think — my childhood brain mixed up phonetic sounds), all bowing to the ground heavy with apples almost every year.

    I do miss all those fresh fruits (oh, the raspberries!) and vegetables my parents tended. Of course, we had to weed every damn morning before we could play — hated that!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m kinda fickle – when I noticed decades ago that Red Delicious were almost always mealy, I discovered Yellow Delicious, which I still like. But then came the Braeburns and the Galas and.. Honeycrisp, too. If it sweet and crisp, like it, but I don’t know if I have a favorite.

    Unfortunately the tree in our yard has an apple that is unidentifiable. Makes great juice, and there are a few good eaters, but most of them get a bit gnarly (we don’t spray). Husband picked apples for a grower south of Winona back in the day, and he could tell stories…


  10. I spent an hour with the back folks, therapist and surgeon. There is nothing they can do because my whole back is so bad. Problems will only get worse. They say I should try some aquatic therapy (out of my price range). I should use the stationary bike even though it hurts me. But they think I should quit painting and typing. But it is all my decision. That I will probably not do any damage by doing things in pain, but then I might. I fully understand that they cannot tell me much. It was what I thought they would tell me. But I am confused. I did just finish a Turneresque pastel.
    As for apples, the fruit, I do not like them. If I am going to eat one, a honey crisp in my preference– have to support my alma mater, or more in this case, The Arb.


    1. Clyde – so sorry to hear of your back problems. Why would aquatic therapy be too expensive? Is it more involved than a cheap membership to the Y or local community center?


  11. My mom recently mentioned ‘Wolf River’ apples. They’re HUGE! Not the best eating, but good for baking I think. Or maybe sauce.
    She remembered having trees of wolf river apples as a kid. Hard to find these days.

    Regarding hair yesterday:
    Mom always cut my hair and Dad’s hair. A few years ago she got tired of cutting dad’s hair. But he insisted she do it anyway. The only way she could get out of it was to have one of the kids ‘hide’ her hair clippers. Then she could honestly tell Dad ‘I don’t know where the clippers are!’

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Like CG, I’m a Cortland gal – great eating (with peanut butter!) and they make excellent apple crisp, which is my favorite apple dessert. Young Adult and I pick apples every fall and we always head to the Cortlands first, although she likes Honeycrisp as well. Depending on what looks good, we usually get two or three kinds.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. We used to be able to buy Winesaps seasonally in Minnesota. They seem to have disappeared now – at least in this part of the country. I like Haralsons for baking or dipping in caramel dip.

    I am, of course, typing this on my trusty Macintosh.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. I like very, very crisp, juicy apples. I buy them in the fall from Havlicek’s Orchard at my local farmers market. It seems my favorite varies, depending on which are at their peak when I buy them. I spend way too much money on apples when they are in season.

    A vendor at Pike place market told me that the honeycrisp apples they grew in Washington state were better than the ones grown in Minnesota. Considering the fine honeycrisps I’ve eaten in mn., I was verrry skeptical.

    Hate red delicious apples.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Husband’s apple picking job was for an orchard right on the Mississippi. He tells of being high up in a tree on a beautiful fall day, and finding the absolute best apple on that tree, then eating it while looking over the river. His favorite apple would change depending on which trees they were picking.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. OT – Heavy heart this evening. Today we had to put Daisy down. Old age, arthritis and cancer caught up with our sweet old yellow Lab. She was well loved and lived almost fourteen years. She’ll be missed.


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