Frenzy over ‘fairy floss’ flavoured grapes
A NEW sweeter variety of grape that caused a frenzy in the United States has just launched in Australian supermarkets.
Coles and Woolworths now stock "cotton candy" or "fairy floss" grapes in their fresh produce sections.
But their season is very short and they could be out of stock in just a few weeks.
Fruit wholesaler Noel Greenhalgh, from RW Pascoe, said these grapes are very different from the grapes most people are used to.
"They're very perfumed and very, very sweet - they certainly have the aroma and taste of fairy floss," Mr Greenhalgh told the ABC.
An American business called Grapery distributes the fruit in the US and sales have been so good that the company bumped up its production from just two acres in 2013 to hundreds of acres in the following years.
"We achieved the astonishing flavour by working closely with our breeding partner and using all-natural breeding practices," Grapery's owners Jack Pandol and Jim Beagle state on their website.
"We breed for flavour, continuously experimenting, trying out a wide range of cross-pollination combinations. Frankly, we were stunned when we discovered a new grape that tasted like cotton candy. But, rest assured, it was accomplished by completely natural means.
"We didn't apply any 'cotton candy flavouring' or plant any sort of flavouring materials into the soil to attain the cotton candy flavour."
A Coles spokesman told news.com.au the grapes are already proving hugely popular.
"We currently stock 100 per cent Australian grown cotton candy grapes in all states except WA," the spokesman said.
"The season runs from mid-Feb to mid-April - weather depending, of course - and at the moment they're $4 for a 400g punnet.
"They're still a specialty product compared to more widely grown varieties like Thompson seedless, but customers with a sweet tooth love them."
The grapes are currently available at Woolworths but are so popular they have sold out online. A Woolworths spokesman has been contacted for comment.
Some social media users say they love the idea, while others argue fruit and candy should be kept separate.