Walmart Begins Selling So-Called ‘Ugly Fruit’
After months of discussion, a brand of blemished apples from Washington, called “I’m perfect,” recently made its debut in Walmart stores.
“One of the challenges growers have is that Mother Nature can throw a curveball such as a hailstorm, high winds or even a string of very hot sunny days, which can damage the exterior finish of fruits,” Shawn Baldwin, Senior Vice President of Global Food Sourcing, Produce and Floral, Walmart U.S., said. “While the texture and flavor remain perfect, the exterior damage usually renders these fruits unsellable in the fresh market because they fail to meet traditional grade standards. We’re proud to be the first retailer to bring these apples to you.”
The “beautifully imperfect” apples will eventually be available in 12 varieties from Granny Smith to Red Delicious. For now, about 300 stores in Florida will offer the apples in 5-pound bags.
“From helping our growers find alternate uses for these less than gorgeous fruits, such as making apple juice or selling small apples for lunch kits, we are committed to identifying options to get less than perfect fruit to market and thereby reduce this type of food waste,” Baldwin said.
“What excites me the most about the launch of these “I’m perfect” apples is that it is a result of working with our suppliers to build the infrastructure and processes that create a new home for perfectly imperfect produce,” he said. “Because ugly produce can occur unexpectedly in any growing season or crop, we want to have the systems in place to offer this type of produce whenever it may occur.”