Episode 76: Pure Michigan Apples with Nick Mascari of Applewood Fresh

The Produce Moms Podcast

Episode 76: Pure Michigan Apples From Family Farms to Your Kitchen with Nick Mascari of Applewood Fresh

Farmers want to farm. They don’t always want to get involved in the marketing and sale of their products. 

Applewood Fresh works with family farmers to bring their products to market. They represent over 34 Michigan apple farmers, spanning 11,000 acres throughout the state of Michigan. 

Nick Mascari, President of Applewood Fresh, grew up in the produce industry. His great uncle started a company that served as a distributor to restaurants and grocery stores. His father took over the business, giving Nick the chance to learn about the industry. 

Nick went on to work for Chiquita and Dole before returning to the family business and then venturing out on his own. He soon landed in Michigan as the Vice-President of sales and marketing for Applewood Fresh before becoming its President and a managing partner. 

Growing Apples in the Midwest 

The nutrient-rich soil found in Michigan is optimal for growing apples and other agriculture products. The area’s unique climate protects the fragile spring buds, which can extend the growing season into late fall. 

Episode 76: Pure Michigan Apples From Family Farms to Your Kitchen with Nick Mascari of Applewood Fresh

Applewood Fresh has three packing facilities in Michigan. They distribute to 20 states, including major retail chains, food service companies, universities, and hospitals. 

Applewood Fresh grows 21 varieties of apples. But their Kanzu, Rave, and SweeTango® apples are what set the company apart from others in the industry.  

A hybrid apple is a cross between two apples. Growers take a specific kind of apple and breed its characteristics with another to grow high-quality apples for consumers. 

The Most Popular Apples on the Market

The Gala apple has become the most popular apple. But other apples like the Honeycrisp are also popular among consumers, and many growers are using the Honeycrisp as the parent for growing new varieties. 

“When you choose an Applewood Fresh apple, you’re making an excellent choice.” – Lori Taylor (15:32-15:35)

If you can’t keep up with all the different apples that appear on the market, the first step is to know what you like. Here’s a good rule of thumb: Try them all and find your favorite. 

You can find Applewood Fresh apples in Kroger, Target, Trader Joe’s, Aldi, and other major retailers. 

Applewood Fresh wants you to explore the apples at your local grocery stores. There are so many varieties that range from tart to sweet and everything in between. Try them all and try them often. 

How To Get Involved

  • Join The Produce Moms Group on Facebook and continue the discussion every week! 
  • Learn more about Applewood Fresh apples here.

If you liked this episode, be sure to subscribe and leave a quick review on iTunes. It would mean the world to hear your feedback and we’d love for you to help us spread the word!

Episode 76: Pure Michigan Apples From Family Farms to Your Kitchen with Nick Mascari of Applewood Fresh

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Lori Taylor

Author: Lori Taylor

Lori Taylor is the Founder & CEO of The Produce Moms. For ten years she sold fresh produce to over 300 grocery stores throughout the United States, and today she is fully focused on working with the produce supply chain, media, and government to increase fresh produce access & consumption in the US and around the globe. Connect with Lori on LinkedIn.

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