A few of you may be interested in the vitamin C content of apples. However, before reading this, you should be aware that paying too much attention to nutritional data can lead to a preoccupation with various kinds of unbalanced diet....this is not the way to stay healthy.
The taste of vitamin C is very distinctive; it's present in very large amounts in oranges, and in fairly large amounts in some apples.
Yorkshire Orchards (see links page) reckons that the apple highest in vitamin C is Ribston, and of the thirty or so apple types I've tried, I would agree with this, judging by the taste. But I've looked around the internet and found some figures. The vitamin C content varies quite a lot - it depends on the conditions under which the apple was grown, and how long ago it was picked. If an apple goes "off" rapidly then so does the vitamin C level. Coxes and a number of other storing varieties are reckoned to lose about half of it in three months. The data refer to freshly picked apples, so far as I can tell, but sources vary widely.
I don't believe the figures in brackets for Jonathan and Golden Delicious, and the Sturmer figures look rather high. My personal estimate of vitamin C level, in a few of the apples I know, judging by the taste, would be (highest to lowest):
Of the commercial varieties I guess Braeburn would be similar in Vitamin C level to Laxton's Fortune, and Golden Delicious ( a misnomer if there ever was one) would be close to Merton Knave. Granny Smith is probably a little below Cox, though the high vitamin C level doesn't compensate for the poor texture or the unpleasantly waxy skin.
So far as I know there is no "standard procedure" for measuring the vitamin C level of an average apple. It would be interesting to devise one.
If anyone has better estimates than the above, or more information, I would be interested to hear.
N.D., Diversity website
UPDATE: I am working on a method for measuring vitamin C in apples. See further down main Apples page.
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