Eat This, Taking Your Gardening Dollar

Coming to Grips with Grapple

Yes, it’s true.  Apparently a "fresh, juicy, extra fancy Washington apple"–a Fuji at that–is not good enough.  It has to be "infused with concentrated grape flavor and pure water." The exact process is a secret–a "Patent pending process," to be precise– that has been approved by the USDA and the FDA, and has been licensed by the Washington State Department of Agriculture.

Well, that makes me feel much better.

The website goes on to explain that this is not genetic modification, and that the addition of the grape flavor adds no sugar or calories.  News reports speculate that the apples are soaked in "natural and artificial grape flavoring" to give them their added sparkle.  Grapples are marketed to children and "busy moms" who can’t be bothered with ordinary apples.  You can even buy them pre-sliced in a plastic bag–because it’s so much work to actually bite into an apple and chew.  Who’s got time for that anymore?  Not busy moms, that’s for sure. I haven’t tasted one, but judging from reports on the Internet, it’s really got that bubble gum/grape soda flavor that’s been missing from apples all these years.

Oh, and by the way–they want you to pronounce it GRAPE-L, as in, a juicy new grape-flavored product from Washington State, not "grapple," as in, a struggle for comprehension.  Got it?  Good.

Posted by on April 12, 2007 at 6:30 am, in the category Eat This, Taking Your Gardening Dollar.
Comments are off for this post

18 responses to “Coming to Grips with Grapple”

  1. Davidg says:

    It’s always sad when fresh fruit gets placed in a plastic package. But, does this mean kids will eat more fruit and less crap?

  2. Miss T says:

    Those things are appalling. If you want grapes, eat grapes!

  3. Amy Stewart says:

    Will this persuade kids to eat more fruit? I’m not a parent so I know I’m wading into dangerous territory here, but…I think that if you want kids to eat apples, you have to feed them apples. I know parents who serve their kids apples and carrot sticks, and parents who serve their kids potato chips and pop-tarts. Guess which kids refuse to eat their veggies?

  4. Carol says:

    You know, I’ve never really liked the taste of brussel sprouts, but if they could make them taste like tomatoes… why / who even thought that this needed to be done to the apples? Geez…

  5. Carol says:

    Wait, what was I thinking? If we are going to change the taste of any fruit (or vegetable), why not make it all taste like chocolate??

  6. kelly says:

    Approved by the USDA and FDA. That’s the best part. Ugh.

  7. I don’t get the science of it .
    If the fruit is injected with grape flavor (quote) : “There is nothing but flavor being infused into the Fuji apple. The apple takes on no additional sugars or calories.
    Then what are they injecting the fruit with ?
    Is the above descriptive wording manipulated symantics ?
    I want to know the science of this technology before I offer a slice of this fruit to any kid or adult.

    FrankenFuji’s is my thought.

    Michelle. – whose mantra is Question Authority .

  8. Colleen says:

    Well, this “busy mom” won’t be feeding her kids any grapples…ever! My kids like apples, and they like grapes. They will never taste them together unless they’re combined in a fruit salad.

    And, yeah, Amy’s right…kids eat what you feed them. My kids have been raised on fresh fruit and veggies, and guess what they eat? The rest of the parents in our family are endlessly amazed when my kids pick up a piece of celery or a carrot stick at get-togethers, instead of the chips and candy that the other kids gravitate to. My kids eat that stuff sometimes, but in general, it’s fruit, veggies…you know..actual FOOD 🙂

  9. margarita says:

    I suppose there is some comfort in the fact that the manufacturer is telling you what’s in the Grapple, more or less, though it is beyond me why you’d eat a food that tasted other than how you would expect. I do know this woman who puts ketchup on absolutely everything she eats, which I think is pretty gross, but there is a lot of sugar already in a lot of the processed foods we eat. Interesting fact about sugar I just read at Wikipedia (don’t believe everything here, but this sounded kind of cool): “The sugar refining industry often uses bone char (calcinated animal bones) for decolorizing.” Not sure if this makes these Grapples non-vegan…weird.

  10. Great post. I don’t really care either way about what they do to the apples. If people want to waste their money on overpriced fruit that tastes like some other fruit you can get cheaply, I guess that’s their problem. But I definitely take offense at the packaging. How utterly bassackward is it to have that much plastic to hold 4 simple apples that come with their own protective coatings?

    And btw, Mr. Idiot Promoter of Nonsensical Fruits Encased in Extensive Plastics, I’m no linguist but if you want people to even consider pronouncing it Graples, you’re gonna have to drop the other P. I know you lose the strong aPPle reference, but the plastic is see-thru and I think only the nittiest of the nitwits won’t figure out they’re apples.

  11. chuck b. says:

    I want to go to the sort of parties where people get drunk and shout about apple harvests.

  12. Ellis Hollow says:

    The marketing department: First ones up against the wall after the revolution. (NSA: I’m quoting a humorous, tongue-in-cheek cartoon I recall from back in the bad old days.)

  13. Nice post. We saw these Grapples in our grocery and of course, the kids wanted them. We didn’t buy them because there were four of them factory-sealed in a plastic container and cost $5.00. That’s a big commitment for something we don’t know if we would even like. Why can’t you just buy one? Or five? We thought it smelled of a scam.

  14. Mary jo Sorensen says:

    I have been allergic to apples now for 25 years but able to eat grapes. My throat closes up with most fresh fruit. For all you complainers I think Grap-Ls are heaven sent. To be able to bite into a juicy apple again with a satisfying crunch and the juice running over one’s teeth is a sensation I have craved for a long time. I am grateful that they are not subject to the one-dimensional thinking I’ve read on your site.

  15. Denise says:

    I love Grapple’s!!! They are amazing, the way they smell and taste! My daughter absolutley loves them too. Our house always has Grapple’s in them. It just adds more variety to apples and tastes amazing!!!!

  16. that guy says:

    “Posted by:Marc @ GardenDesk |
    I have been allergic to apples now for 25 years but able to eat grapes. My throat closes up with most fresh fruit. For all you complainers I think Grap-Ls are heaven sent. To be able to bite into a juicy apple again with a satisfying crunch and the juice running over one’s teeth is a sensation I have craved for a long time. I am grateful that they are not subject to the one-dimensional thinking I’ve read on your site.”

    I got news for you…if you can eat a Grapple, ur not allergic to apples…its still an apple, u missed out on 25 years of apple eating

  17. Kenny says:

    I am In up-state New York Our Stores no longer have grapples because they claim they are so expensive. yeah right!!!! so what!!! we want them back!!! We love them!!!! Bring them back to us here In Elmira New York!!!(PLEASE)…Thank You!!!!

  18. Andrea Frolek says:

    Looks like I’m coming in late with my comment, but my daughter just tried one of these today ( courtesy of the teacher ). I’ve obviously missed something because I tend to drift over to the real, good & old fashioned apple section and don’t bother looking at fruit in plastic, domey looking containers. I guess it was only a matter of time before someone came up with this cash cow. And the masses buy in. I guess for anyone who doesn’t want to spend the bucks on these pricey purple tasting tidbits, they could always take some grape flavored Dimetapp and then a bite out of a Fuji or Gala to get the idea. I’ll pass on both because I love apples and I love grapes. HEY .. MAYBE I COULD EAT THOSE AT THE SAME TIME! Is that just as creepy as a “FDA APPROVED Grapple?” I think I’ll just risk some of my life with traces of pesticides instead of taking on the next “best” trend since Crocs. Are these apples BPA AND CFC FREE? Do the Heart and Stroke Foundation and the Canadian Cancer Foundation argue over these little gems? ( Yes, I’m Canadian, no, I don’t use “eh” or eat back bacon or live in an igloo )


    WICKED QUEEN DISGUISED AS WITCH: “Go ahead, take a bite!”

    SNOW WHITE (as she clicks closed her cellphone): “Oh my, but is it a Grapple?”