The office staff of the New York Apple Association in Fishers, NY, was bubbling with excitement on Jan. 17 when the U.S. Postal Service notified them that the Northern Spy apple, an older but beloved cooking apple, was chosen as one of four U.S. apples to represent a new postcard stamp collection.
Molly Golden, director of marketing for the NYAA, told The Produce News that the association had no pre-notice, nor was there an application process.
"We were notified that this classic New York apple would be among the four postcard stamps that form the collection," she said. "More than 100 apple varieties are produced for commercial sale in the United States, so this is quite an honor. To celebrate, we suggest consumers, 'bake a pie with Spies,' and any other great New York apple variety."
The Northern Spy apple is dear to the NYAA because it was discovered and produced about 15 miles outside of Rochester, near to where the association office is in Fishers.
It is a larger tree, and over the years most large commercial trees have been replaced by smaller trees that produce more apples. Despite that, the NYAA office still receives phone calls from consumers wanting to know where they can buy the Northern Spy, claiming that it is the only apple that can makes their family apple pie or other cooked apple recipe perfect.
"The Northern Spy is not too hard to find at greenmarkets or farm markets," said Ms. Golden. Hopefully those growers will continue to make it available for those consumers who love it."
Other apple varieties that complete the stamp collection are the Golden Delicious, the Baldwin and the Granny Smith. For more information on this and other non-circulated stamps can be found at www.usps.com/stamps.