Unique apple trees developed by the U of M are protected. Propagation of these trees without a license is prohibited, even if you want to propagate or topwork only one tree.
If you'd like to get licensed to grow any of University of Minnesota apple varieties listed on this page or have licensing questions, please contact Adam Bolton in the University of Minnesota Office of Technology Commercialization. Adam can be reached by email at [email protected]
Apples licensed through the University of Minnesota Office of Technology Commercialization
Honeycrisp (aka Honeycrunch®) Apple Tree
Honeycrisp Apple Trees are no longer under patent protection in the U.S. or Canada. Protected Europe, New Zealand, Australia, Chile, and South Africa, this variety is popular as the Honeycrunch® apple outside North America. Honeycrisp or Honeycrunch®, this explosively crisp and juicy apple commands a premium price.
- Visit the Technology Commercialization website for more information on licensing Honeycrisp or Honeycrunch®.
Zestar® Apple Tree
The Zestar!® apple is a uniquely crunchy early season apple. It has a sprightly sweet-tart taste with a hint of brown sugar. Start up your cash flow with sales earlier in the summer.
Zestar!® apple trees are no longer under patent protection in the U.S. but a license is required to propagate Zestar!® outside the U.S., including Canada.
Rave® and First Kiss® Apples
Rave® and First Kiss® apples are brands of the MN55 apple cultivar, which is protected under the US Plant Patent Act and by Plant Breeders Rights in other countries.
- In Minnesota: Commercial apple growers in Minnesota can obtain information regarding licenses to grow MN55 apples under the First Kiss® brand by completing a First Kiss® growers application.
- Outside of Minnesota: Rave® has been exclusively licensed by the University of Minnesota. More information on availability and licensing can be found on the Rave® webpage.
Triumph™ Apple Tree
The Triumph!™ apple (aka MN80) is a well-balanced and pleasantly tart red apple. Its excellent scab resistance and good storage life make it a great option for direct market and organic growers.
Triumph™ has been released as an "open variety" (tree royalty only). Triumph® apple trees are protected by United States Plant Patents or Plant Variety Rights in other countries. Nurseries must obtain a license from the University of Minnesota in order to propagate and sell Triumph™.
The SweeTango® apple, Minneiska variety (US Plant Patent 18,812) is protected under the US Plant Patent Act and by Plant Breeders Rights in other countries. SweeTango® has been exclusively licensed by the University of Minnesota.
- In Minnesota: For growers located in the state of Minnesota, please contact Ferguson's Orchard to get licensed to grow and sell SweeTango® fruit.
- Outside of Minnesota: More information on availability can be found on the SweeTango® website or by contacting the Technology Commercialization team.
SnowSweet® Apple Tree
The SnowSweet® apple is a late season variety that has a delightful sweet taste, with a slight tart balance and rich overtones. Consumers love it not only for the flavor, but also because it is slow to oxidize after cutting. An asset for preparing appetizing dishes in advance. SnowSweet® can help extend your sales season.
MN33 Apple Trees
MN33 produces attractive, well colored fruit with a unique combination of traits including an excellent crisp, juicy texture and a sweet, well balanced flavor with occasional tropical overtones.
MN33 will be released as an “open variety” (tree royalty only) and growers may purchase trees directly from nurseries licensed by the University of Minnesota. See the list of licensed nurseries below to purchase your trees for 2023.
Supported Through the Minnesota Nursery Research Corporation
Frostbite™, Keepsake, Sweet 16 and State Fair Apple Trees
Frostbite™, Keepsake, Sweet 16 and State Fair apple trees are available at many nurseries and supported by Minnesota Nursery Research Corporation (MNRC) participants.
Please order from MNRC nurseries to help support future apple research.
Frostbite™ and Triumph™ are trademarks of the University of Minnesota and SnowSweet® (Wildung variety), Zestar!® (Minnewashta variety), Honeycrunch®, SweeTango® (Minneiska variety), and Rave®/First Kiss® are registered trademarks of the University of Minnesota.