New Genetically Modified 'Botox Apples' Won't Turn Brown

Frankenapples could soon be here: A Canadian biotechnology company, Okanagan Specialty Fruits has asked the USDA to approve a new "Arctic" apple that, when sliced, doesn't brown. It'll help sell more snacks! Some critics call it a "botox apple."

The company hopes to win approval to sell their genetically modified apple to the wide open U.S. market. So, how does it work? By "silencing" enzymes. From the AP:

Okanagan Specialty Fruits of Summerland, British Columbia, licensed the non-browning technology from Australian researchers who pioneered it in potatoes. Essentially, the genes responsible for producing the enzyme that induces browning have been silenced in the apple variety being marketed as "Arctic."

The executive director of the Center for Food Safety, Andrew Kimbrell isn't so confident in the Arctic apple's appeal: "A botox apple is not what people are looking for. I'm predicting failure." Well, okay then. But the president of Okanagan Specialty Fruits, Neal Carter, is confident that his product will do well: "Some people won't like it just because of what it is. In the end, it's a great product, no question about it, and people will see the process used to get it had very sound science."

So don't worry — the biotech company that's trying to make lots of money from apples that won't brown only uses Very Sound Science. Nothing to worry about!

[Image via AP]