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The Cosmic Crisp apple is poised to take over grocery store shelves: It lasts for up to a year but costs double other brands

INSIDER logoINSIDER 12/2/2019 Kat Tenbarge
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[Video provided by NBC News]
  • A new type of apple is debuting in grocery stores this December, and it boasts a sweet, crispy, juicy flavor - and a shelf life of "easily" 10 to 12 months.
  • The Cosmic Crisp is poised to take over the global apple economy, with Washington growers betting $40 million on the breed, and a $10 million marketing campaign.
  • Washington State University developed the Cosmic Crisp breed starting in 1997, to help the US state with the most apple growers overcome rival breeds like the Pink Lady and the Royal Gala.
  • The apple was named the Cosmic Crisp because of its dark red skin with white specks that are reminiscent of a starry night. More than 12 million Cosmic Crisp trees are planted across Washington.
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The Cosmic Crisp apple is ready to shoot for the stars.

a hand holding a banana © AP Photo/Elaine Thompson
Washington apple growers hope the Cosmic Crisp, a new breed of apple that can supposedly stay fresh for 10 to 12 months in the refrigerator, takes over the global market. Farmers have planted more than 12 million Cosmic Crisp trees in the state so far, betting more than $40 million on the apple's success.

The breed has a dark red skin speckled with white flecks, which led to it's starry-themed name. It's supposed to be crispy, juicy, and sweet. The department of horticulture at Washington State University started developing the Cosmic Crisp in 1997, when the state's apple growers - who primarily grew Red Delicious and Golden Delicious apples - began to face tough competition from sweet breeds like the Pink Lady and the Royal Gala.

a woman standing in a kitchen preparing food © AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Starting December 1, the Cosmic Crisp apples made their way onto grocery store shelves. They're expected to make their global debut in the beginning of 2020 - for now, the brand's social media pages are monitoring where the fruits can be purchased for $5 a pound - as a "premium" apple variety, that's more than twice as expensive as standard varieties, like Honeycrisp and Gala apples.

So far, they've been spotted at stores in Washington. Excitement has been building in Washington for years now, and farmers had to enter a random lottery to get their hands on the first Cosmic Crisp seedlings in 2017. Booming sales led to more than 12,000 acres of Cosmic Crisp trees today. It's said to be the biggest and fastest growing endeavor in apple history.

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