Designer apples are becoming more popular. The hottest apple on the market is the Honeycrisp — which was developed at the University of Minnesota, which cross-pollinated several different apple trees. After tasting different apples, they chose Honeycrisp and the rest is a story of a popular fruit. The patent on Honeycrisp has expired, and apple growers seeking to find the next big thing are now looking at SweeTango. This radio story (and written article) from NPR’s Morning Edition, “Want to Grow These Apples? You’ll Have To Join The Club” (November 10, 2014) describes how this time the University of Minnesota is protecting its intellectual property. I think someone up there in Minnesota’s research labs has learned some marketing principles.
This is an interesting article and example of new product development, the product life cycle, and value creation.