Opal® Apples Delivers Produce to the International Space Station

Sponsored Message
Learn More

Mon. January 12th, 2015 - by Jordan Okumura-Wright

YAKIMA, WA – Opal® apples are going out of this world...literally.

Last Saturday a shipment of Opal apples rocketed off to the International Space Station. This unique produce order resulted from a request by the Johnson Space Center to FirstFruits of Washington for some fresh fruit for its astronauts. Opal apple's growers immediately jumped onboard.

Ralph Broetje, Owner-Operator of Broetje Orchards (credit: Katie's Cucina)“This is a special honor, to be able to provide fresh apples to the crew members at the International Space Station,” said Ralph Broetje, Owner-Operator of Broetje Orchards. “When we got the request for apples we knew right away that we wanted to send Opal, the most special apple in our line-up.”

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched the seventh Dragon spacecraft on the fifth operational cargo delivery mission to the International Space Station on January 10, 2015 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The flight is being conducted under the Commercial Resupply Services contract with NASA. The astronauts received their apples on the morning of Monday, January 12th, 2015.

At NASA's request, Ralph and Cheryl Broetje, the Founders of Broetje Orchards and exclusive North American growers of Opal apples, included a personal note to accompany the cargo.

The astronauts will be limited to only one or two apples per crew member due the the extremely high cost of this type of deliver. After taking their first bite, however, I doubt the astronauts will mind.

According to a press release, Expedition 41 launched on September 25, 2014 with a crew of of three Russian cosmonauts, two NASA astronauts, and one member of the European Space Agency.

Opal Apples

FirstFruits of Washington