Just 10 days into a new job at Ceres Fruit Growers, Quality Assurance Co-ordinator, Melinda Christodoulides, experienced an extremely rare occurrence: a perfectly etched image of a branch and a leaf on a Pink Lady apple.
She explains: “Red apples need sunlight to turn the skin red and, in this case, the colour formation was blocked by the shadow of the branch and leaf and it formed around the shadow. I was receiving training by Adrian Theron on the Ceres Fruit Growers packing line looking at the Pink Lady apples and one of the fruit we picked to look at had this extraordinary image,” she says.
This particular Pink Lady was picked on Dennekruin Farm in the Witzenberg Valley of Ceres.
Tru-Cape Fruit Marketing is the largest exporter of South African apples and pears and wholly owned by the growers of Ceres Fruit Growers and Two-a-Day in the Grabouw Valley. Tru-Cape Quality Assurance Manager, Henk Griessel, confirmed the rarity of such a find. “In the past, we have intentionally created heart and star images by placing a sticker on the fruit but in all the many years I have been in the industry I can’t recall such a perfect naturally occurring example that clearly shows how fruit develops its colour,” Griessel ends.