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What is a Pink Pineapple? Where to Buy It? (Complete Guide)

Pink Pineapple

Have you ever come across a pineapple with pink flesh? If not, let me introduce you to the fascinating world of pink pineapples. This unique fruit, also known as the “Jewel of the Jungle,” has gained popularity for its eye-catching color and distinct taste.

It’s a result of years of research and genetic modification by Del Monte, which has turned a common tropical fruit into an interesting culinary experience.

Pink pineapples are a genetically modified organism (GMO) made by manipulating the lycopene and beta-carotene content in the fruit. Lycopene is a red pigment that’s commonly found in tomatoes, watermelon, and papaya and is known for its antioxidant properties.

In traditional pineapples, the lycopene decreases and yellow pigment beta-carotene increases as the fruit matures, which leads to the classic yellow color. However, in pink pineapples, the lycopene is maintained, giving the fruit its beautiful pink hue.

The taste of pink pineapples sets them apart from their yellow counterparts, as they are said to be sweeter, juicier, and less sour with candy-like aromatics. Hand-harvested and sustainably farmed, this delectable fruit has captured the attention of food enthusiasts and chefs who are keen on incorporating it into their recipes and menus.

Sliced Pink Pineapple

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

Botanical Name: Ananas comosus ‘Pink Pineapple’

Common Name: Pink Pineapple

Family: Bromeliaceae

Plant Type: Perennial

Bloom Time: Rarely blooms, primarily grown for its unique fruit

Flower Color: Pinkish to reddish inflorescence

Native Area: Cultivated variety, grown in Costa Rica by Del Monte

What is a Pink Pineapple?

As you might have guessed, Pink Pineapple is a variant of the standard pineapple plant. It is popularly known for its pink-colored flesh which is said to be sweeter than the standard pineapple. This variety is a hybrid of two types of pineapples: The Red Spanish and the classic Sugarloaf.

The Pink Pineapple is a relatively new addition to the fruit market, having been first developed in the 2000s. It is a genetically modified fruit that was created by Del Monte Fresh Produce, a leading producer and distributor of fresh fruits and vegetables.

They’re grown in limited quantities by Del Monte in the South-Central region of Costa Rica since it has the ideal soil and climate conditions for growing pineapples, including conventional pineapples.

The company has been developing and testing Pinkglow® pink pineapple for over 16 years to make sure it has the perfect taste and aroma for a blend that’s not just visually stunning but also delicious.

One of the key benefits of the Pink Pineapple is its high nutritional value. It is rich in vitamins C and A, as well as dietary fiber and bromelain, an enzyme that aids in digestion. This makes it a healthy and delicious addition to any diet.

Another interesting fact about the Pink Pineapple is that it is not just its flesh that is pink. The leaves of the plant also have a pinkish tinge, which adds to its overall aesthetic appeal. This makes it a popular choice for ornamental purposes as well as for consumption.

It is worth noting that Pink Pineapple isn’t a separate species but rather a variation of the classic Pineapple plant, Ananas comosus.

Uses of Pink Pineapple

Pink Pineapple is not just a pretty plant, but it is also versatile in its uses. They can be eaten fresh, dried, or used in various dishes like salads, jams, and much more. Pink Pineapple can also be used to make cocktails and smoothies.

One of the most popular uses of pink pineapple is in salads. The bright pink color of the fruit adds a pop of color to any salad and its sweet flavor pairs well with savory ingredients like chicken and feta cheese. Pink Pineapple can also be used to make a delicious salsa that can be served alongside grilled fish or chicken.

In addition to its culinary uses, pink pineapple is also used in traditional medicine. The fruit contains bromelain, an enzyme that has anti-inflammatory properties and can help reduce swelling and pain. Bromelain is also said to help in digestion and improve skin health.

If you’re looking for a refreshing drink, pink pineapple can be used to make a variety of cocktails and smoothies. Consider making a pina colada with this delicious fruit and impress your friends and family with its radiant beauty and flavor.

Plus, pink pineapple can be used for decorative purposes. The vibrant pink color of the fruit can add a pop of color to any table setting or floral arrangement. Some people even use the leaves of the plant to make wreaths and other decorative items.

Genetic Modification and FDA Approval

Lycopene and Beta Carotene

In my research, I discovered that the pink coloration of the genetically modified pineapple comes from the presence of lycopene, which naturally occurs in other fruits, such as tomatoes and watermelons.

The bioengineering process replaces the yellow pigment usually associated with pineapples, beta carotene, with the pink pigment lycopene.

Not only does this give the pineapple its unique pink hue, but it also provides consumers with a product that contains antioxidants known to potentially improve health.

Safety and GMO Foods

As for the safety of this product, I found out that the FDA has approved genetically modified pink pineapples as safe for consumption. According to the FDA, there are “no unresolved safety or regulatory questions” about the pink-fleshed fruit.

Made by Del Monte Fresh Produce, this pink pineapple received approval after thorough evaluations to ensure that it meets safety requirements.

Furthermore, the process through which pink pineapples are created is an example of genetic modification, also known as GMO (genetically modified organism).

Genetically modified organisms often face skepticism and concerns about their safety. However, the FDA ensures that GMOs, such as the pink pineapple, undergo careful evaluation and must adhere to strict safety regulations before being made available to consumers.

From this perspective, I can say that these pineapples are generally considered safe for consumption, just like any other pineapple variety.

Pinkglo Pineapple

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

Where Can I Buy a Pink Pineapple?

While researching these beautiful fruits, I learned that Pinkglow® pineapples are not readily available in all local markets due to their carefully controlled cultivation and distribution.

But you’d be happy to know they can be ordered online through specialized retailers like Tropical Fruit Box, who ship Pinkglow® pineapples to the U.S. and Canada.

The exclusivity and novelty of pink pineapples impact their pricing significantly. While traditional pineapples are widely available and affordable, Pinkglow® pineapples can cost substantially more. In my experience, the price range for a single Pinkglow® pineapple, including shipping, is around $50.

I’ve found that pink pineapple fruits, while rare and pricier than their yellow counterparts, are worth the investment for their unique taste, appearance, and health benefits.

 

Other Fruit Guides from Planet Natural:

What is Yellow Watermelon? And How to Grow it Easily at Home

Complete Guide to Plant, Grow, and Care for Pineberry