History of Michigan Apples
The Michigan Apple Committee was originally established as the Michigan State Apple Commission in 1939 as a commodity group representing Michigan Apple growers. The Michigan State Apple Commission became the Michigan Apple Committee as part of Public Act 232 in 1965. The Michigan Apple Committee (MAC) is charged with marketing, communications, consumer education and research on behalf of Michigan growers. Assessment funds paid by growers allow MAC to establish and implement marketing programs in retail stores, communication and education to consumers, and research to help sustain and grow the industry in our state.
For generations, families in Michigan have continued the tradition of growing apples. With Michigan’s climate, proximity to lakes and nutrient-rich soil, growers discovered Michigan was the ideal place to grow quality, flavorful apples.
Did you know these facts about Michigan Apples?
- Archaeologists have found evidence that people have been eating apples since at least 6500 B.C.
- Apples were brought to North America by colonists in the 17th century. In 1625, Reverend William Blaxton planted the first apple orchard on the North American continent in New England.
- Apple varieties brought as seeds from Europe were spread along Native American trade routes, as well as being cultivated on Colonial farms. By the mid-1600s there were about 60 varieties of apples.
- John Chapman, (a.k.a. Johnny Appleseed) really did exist and is one of the reasons why we have so many apples today. Chapman owned many tree nurseries in the Midwest and sold and traded apple trees.
- Apples, species Malus domestica, are members of the Rose family, and have five flowers with five petals and five sepals.