Michigan Apple Committee Research Priorities

Increase demand

To conduct consumer-related research that will aid in the sale and profitability of Michigan Apples.

  • Market research
    • Variety specific demographics
    • Economic drivers related to markets, varieties and consumer preferences
  • Packaging/New Product Development
    • Lengthen shelf life
    • Reduce bruising
    • Overall consumer appeal

Improve quality and consistency

To demonstrate how to improve Michigan Apples in terms such as variety, size, taste and appearance.

  • Apple variety evaluation specific to:
    • Soils
    • Weather
    • Storability
    • Rootstocks
  • Technology
    • Post-harvest storage improvements
    • Packing line improvements
  • Growth regulators/thinners

Improve Production Efficiency

To help increase grower profitability by improving production efficiency.

  • Training systems - providing uniformity and consistency
    • High yield/quality
    • Solid set use
  • Technology
    • Drone use (crop, weather, insect/disease monitoring)
    • Mechanization – reduce labor needs
  • Precision apple production
  • Crop Load Management
    • Pruning, thinning
  • Soil – rootstock matches to soil types, manipulation and management of soil issues
  • Minimizing pesticide / increasing biologic controls
  • Economic drivers – production vs cost

Food Safety

To enhance produce safety systems for all phases of production, harvest, packing, storage, transportation, receiving and point-of-sale environments.

  • Production/Harvest Practices
  • Food Handling Practices
  • Pathogen/Microbial Risk
  • DPA/Fungicide Methods
  • FMSA & GAP

Last Updated: October 2020