More than 20 years ago, a group of passionate breeders in France started to cross-cultivate apple varieties with wild red-fleshed selections on a quest to produce a truly unique apple. Multiple crosses and four generations later, the first selections were commercialised, offering an exciting and distinctive eating experience.
The Kissabel range offers varieties that differ in flesh shade, skin colour, flavour and harvesting period, but all will be marketed under the Kissabel "I’m red inside" banner.
During the breeding process, it quickly became apparent that there were three colours emerging. It was felt the best option was to introduce a range to reflect the unique assortment of red-fleshed apples, which differ in flesh tone, skin colour, flavour and harvest timing, all to be marketed under the Kissabel brand.
Kissabel Rouge has red skin and vibrant red flesh, with a crisp bite and intense flavour that features hints of berries. Kissabel Orange has an attractive bright-orange skin hiding bold pink flesh that is firm and juicy, with a perfect sweet-tart balance. Kissabel Jaune has freckled yellow skin that reveals delicate pink flesh that is crisp and sweet.
The group behind Kissabel is the global consortium "IFORED", which has brought together 14 of the biggest apple producers from five continents. The UK representatives are Worldwide Fruit and Greenyard Fresh UK, which are working collaboratively to develop and grow Kissabel in the UK.
The brand was launched in 2017 and small volumes of UK-grown Kissabel Jaune and Kissabel Orange were sold into leading UK retailers in 2018. The feedback was superb and fruit performed well. Consumers are impressed with Kissabel — they look fabulous and taste great. UK retailers are keen to sell these products when they are available. It has huge appeal and great visual presence.
After the success of the UK pilot orchards and initial sales, commercial orchards of Kissabel Jaune and Kissabel Orange are being planted in the next 12 months, so volumes of UK-grown fruit will significantly increase over the next five years.
The Kissabel range is a fantastic innovation and a huge step forward in apple breeding. It is unique in the marketplace in that there are three different offerings within the brand.
In the age of social media, consumers are always looking for the next big thing, especially in fresh -produce. The current apple category market is fairly flat so needs something really new, and the introduction of Kissabel is revolutionary in this category.
SEE ALL BUSINESS AWARDS 2019 WINNERS