UC Davis Agricultural and Resource Economics

Jennifer Armen, Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc.

The OSF Story, Including the Flagship Development and Commercialization of Nonbrowning Arctic Apples

Date and Location

Thursday, March 7, 2019, 4:10 PM - 5:30 PM
ARE Library Conference Room, 4101 Social Sciences and Humanities

Abstract

Jenn is Vice President for Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc., the developer of the nonbrowning Arctic® apple. Jenn has spent 35 years in the fresh produce industry. Originally trained as a botanist and plant pathologist, she spent the first half of her career in the post-harvest crop protection industry, culminating in managing a global post-harvest business. The focus of this work was assuring that crop quality, largely tree fruit and vegetables, was maintained from farm to consumer. Recruited to the vegetable seed industry, Jenn was instrumental in the establishment of the company that launched the PureHeart® personal sized watermelon. At the time, there was little industry support for a small watermelon for fear that both the watermelon and melon markets would suffer. Certainly, that did not happen and now personal sized watermelon are consumed in over 60% of U.S. households. This work also set the stage for the produce industry to pay closer attention to the impact that variety selection throughout the supply chain. Jenn’s work with the Arctic® apple began 10 years ago, when the company needed support in their industry relations work. Four years ago, Jenn joined the company full time and today oversees the commercial activities for OSF. Always active in the produce industry, Jenn has served on multiple industry association boards and committees. Of Greek heritage, Jenn has a passion for preparing and sharing meals with friends and family. A life-long athlete, Jenn resides with her husband, Corey, in the North Carolina mountains where she is an avid road and off-road cyclist. Additionally, as an expert skier, Jenn finds herself roaming the world to experience the next steep and deep!

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