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DINA ROSE, PhD is a sociologist, parent educator and feeding expert empowering parents to raise kids who eat right.

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Dinner Together Building Healthy Families One Meal at a Time.

Food Politics Marion Nestle's intelligent take on the politics of food and nutrition.

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Monday
Nov262012

"Crunches Like an Apple. Tastes Like a Grape."

Have you heard about Grapple?

Say 'Grape-L'  

My husband and I ran across Grapples in the store yesterday. Imagine an apple crossed with a grape Pixy Stix.  Yum.

Turning a natural food into a processed food.  That's value added!

Are they nuts?

The website touts:

  • The newest thing in apples.
  • Eating healthy has never been this much fun!
  • Apples are a fantastic snack. Grapes are a wonderful snack. Try a Grāpple® brand apple today, and enjoy the best of both of them in one!
  • A relaxing bathing process prepares our apples for you or your kids.

More from their website: Q) Why does it say ‘Natural and Artificial Flavor’ ?

A) Our main flavor ingredient is the same synthesized grape flavoring agent used in 100’s of other retail food items. Because it is not feasible for us to ‘crush all of the flavor’ we would need from grapes themselves, we are forced to say ‘Natural and Artificial Flavor’. The grape flavoring is the same that you would get out of Mother Nature’s grapes themselves.

It's tempting to get outraged.  Believe me, that's where I went first. But when you think about it...

Is this any different than fortifying grape juice with Vitamin C (so manufacturers can say it's more than sugar water)?

JUICY JUICE INGREDIENTS:

APPLE JUICE, AND GRAPE JUICE (WATER, JUICE CONCENTRATES), AND LESS THAN 0.5% OF NATURAL FLAVORS, ASCORBIC ACID (VITAMIN C), CITRIC ACID

Actually, Grapples might even be better than juice.

From a habits perspective, a juice habit is likely to lead to a soda habit.  A Grapple habit would lead to an apple habit.

~Changing the conversation from nutrition to habits.~

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Reader Comments (8)

IDK - I think a Grapple habit is much more likely to lead to a Grape Pixy Stix habit, in the same way that black-bean Brownies lead to a brownie habit and not a black bean habit. The kids who have texture problems with apples aren't likely to try them just because they are grape-flavored, and the kids who have flavor problems with apples aren't going to move up to regular apples that don't taste like grape flavoring. Fail.

I'm not really against artificial colors and flavors persay, but I wish they would keep them in candy where they belong. They are a good indicator of a "sometimes" food.

November 26, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMichele Hays

I saw and tried these 3 years ago and thought they were disgusting-its not a grape flavor, its a grape kool-aid/fake candy flavor. Also the whole brain confusion of looks like an apple, smells and tastes like grape candy was not enjoyable(I was also pregnant at the time). My then 5 year old who is not a picky eater wouldn't touch them, nor would anyone(not even the teens) where I worked.
eat a real apple, and real grapes-much better for you anyway.

November 26, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMomof3

I have to disagree on this one. The idea is to teach our children to like the taste of real food. This is fake food.

November 26, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLisa D

Michelle: You might be right. Grapple might be more likely to promote a Pixy Stix habit than an apple-eating one.

Momof3: It was disgusting.

Lisa D: I didn't say Grapple was a good idea. I said it might be better than juice. In a way, they're both fake food.

Dina

November 26, 2012 | Registered CommenterDina Rose

It turns out, monof3, that fake grapes do taste like real grapes. Specifically, they taste like Concord grapes, which I get with my CSA every year and promptly pass to the nieces, who inexplicably like them. Blech,

December 21, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterConuly

My kids like grapples. Well, I don't know if they like grapples so much as that they think it is funny that it's an apple that tastes like a grape. I'm happy to have my kids eat them -- seems like a "trying something different" kind of thing, but they are much more expensive than regular apples, so we've only gotten them a few times. Plus my small town grocery store doesn't always have them in stock.

March 23, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMargaret

Margaret,

I agree that Grapples can easily fall into the "try something different" category. And I agree wholeheartedly that there is a place in the diet for everything—even grape-flavored apples. If your kids like them, I say, "go for it,"...but I thought, "Yuk."

Dina

March 24, 2013 | Registered CommenterDina Rose

I just bought these. Honestly, they don't taste a thing like a pixie stik. They have a very faint grape flavor and the apple itself doesn't taste like a grape- more like an apple!! So, the flavor is quite faint at best....Not much flavor at all, other than apple flavor. I paid $2.99 for 4......I won't buy them again, but it was worth a try. My son wanted them and they are still a good apple!

May 18, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterlisa

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