Sunday, February 05, 2006

New Pineapple Variety in 2006

"Honey Gold" Announced in 2003

In October 2003, Del Monte Fresh Produce announced plans to launch a new "Honey Gold" pineapple variety (also known as "MA2") in 2006. (This new Honey Gold should not to be confused with the Gold variety, mentioned in a previous post.)

Del Monte Fresh Produce's October 2003 press release describes the new Honey Gold:

The Del Monte Honey Gold(TM) pineapple, which was developed after five years of extensive research and product testing, has a smooth, distinctive bright yellow exterior; a refreshing, slightly sweet flavor; and an intense aroma. It also offers consumers a particularly long shelf life at room temperature.

2006 Release Still "Eagerly Await[ed]"

Last week, the Pineapple Blog contacted Del Monte Fresh Produce for more information about the Honey Gold. In an e-mail response, Eva Torres, executive assistant at Del Monte Fresh Produce, stated: "We eagerly await the launch of Del Monte Honey GoldTM pineapple at the end of 2006." Ms. Torres later stated that Del Monte Fresh Produce has no further information about the Honey Gold at this time.

Patent Application: More Juicy Details

While Del Monte Fresh Produce currently has little to say about its new pineapple, the U.S. patent application for the Honey Gold provides a great deal of information about this variety.

According to the application, they Honey Gold was developed using material from a Taiwan pineapple variety, the fragrant Perfume pineapple (Tainung No.11) described in a previous post. The fruit is small, only 0.837 kg on average. Its average Brix is 16.18. Its citric acid and Vitamin C levels are both higher than that of Tainung No.11. Its leaves are less spiny than those of those of Tainung No.11.

Below is a drawing of the Honey Gold, excerpted from materials publicly available from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Patent Application Information Retrieval (PAIR) system:

Postscript: Reader Feedback

The Pineapple Blog recently received from a reader a link to a BusinessWeek online article about Del Monte Fresh Produce. The article (dated February 6, 2006) makes no mention of the Honey Gold.