Young orchardist Eliza Greenman says yes. I’d be interested to see some more rigorous testing.
In an unofficial experiment, Greenman tested scabbed and unscabbed Parma apples, a high-sugar variety native to southwestern Virginia, and found the scarred apples had a 2 to 5 percent higher sugar content than unmarred apples from the same tree. More sugar means a higher alcohol content once fermented, producing a tastier hard cider.
But she loves these ugly apples for another reason: They may be more nutritious and have a higher antioxidant content. Says Greenman: “I believe stress can help create a super fruit.”
tjasko, I agree, I’d like to hear more about the testing and rigor.
Damaged fruit ripen faster, so if two fruit are picked from the same tree and one is bird pecked, it makes sense that the bird pecked fruit will have higher brix. When I want to get the first tastes of from a tree each season, its always the good parts of a damaged fruit for that reason.
More nutritious doesn’t matter much to me when it comes to fruits and vegetables, unless we are talking about an order of magnitude. 10% more nutritious is useless if it is 50% less palatable, unless there is a scarcity. For a home grower, there is generally an abundance. Better to eat 2 unblemished apples that can be stored for more than a week, than 1 blemished one.
2-5% more sugar is probably not discernible to the palate. There is often (usually?) more variation than that within a given piece of fruit.
quite true. Most common stressor would be sunlight itself, that antioxidant(sunscreen) production is increased in areas where fruits are bombarded with uv rays, which is why some farms even put aluminum plates neath trees to reflect as much sunlight from below and help boost pigmentation, reducing ‘bikini tan lines/areas’…
chafing seems to have an effect too. Below li jujubes were thrashed about onto the trees’ thorny branches, and noticed that the snakeskin areas were particularly flavorful and sweet.
lady farm workers shouldn’t wear skirts in this orchard …
a cripps pink farm in australia with mirrors on the ground, facing up, to encourage pink pigmentation at the fruits’ bottoms. As commonly known, many plant pigments also serve as antioxidants.