Feb 4, 2020
TS Biotechnology Holdings acquires Okanagan Specialty Fruits

Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc. (OSF) announced Feb. 3 the acquisition of OSF by TS Biotechnology Holdings, LLC, an affiliate of Third Security, LLC. OSF is the pioneering agricultural company behind the development and commercialization of the non-browning Arctic apple. Third Security is a venture capital firm led by Randal J. Kirk. The transaction closed on Jan. 31, 2020.

Intrexon issued a press release on Jan. 2, 2020 announcing its intention to sell certain non-healthcare assets, including OSF, after stating early last year that it would intensify its focus on the healthcare industry.

OSF is a vertically integrated apple growing and marketing company that is grower-founded and grower-led. The company’s non-browning Arctic apple delivers fresh sliced apples with orchard-fresh flavor. OSF offers foodservice operators, retailers and consumers a fresh-sliced apple that requires less preparation, produces less waste and delivers better taste.

The technology behind Arctic apples provides a sustainable solution that affords a better eating experience, benefiting everyone in the produce supply chain. As an alternative to costly chemical solutions that rob flavor, Arctic apples solve both cost per serving and quality concerns associated with pre-cut apples while also providing an extended shelf-life that minimizes waste.

“R.J. Kirk is a powerful champion of our Arctic apples and we are thrilled to continue our partnership with him at Third Security,” said Neal Carter, Founder of Okanagan Specialty Fruits. “Collaboration with Third Security will facilitate our continued success as we further expand into retail and foodservice, enhancing our ability to deliver more apples in more places.”  

“The success of OSF’s Arctic apple is ground-breaking for the produce industry and for bioengineering science,” remarked Kirk, founder and CEO of Third Security. “We are excited to add OSF’s innovation and passion to our portfolio.”  

OSF remains focused on expanding the availability of Arctic apples into new marketplaces. OSF announced the introduction of its fresh apple slices into food service last fall.  

OSF is a dynamic agriculture biotechnology company based in Summerland, British Columbia, Canada that specializes in developing tree fruit varieties with novel attributes that benefit fruit producers and consumers alike. Founded in 1996, OSF is one of the first firms in the commercial tree fruit industry to pursue use of biotechnology-directed breeding to deliver product innovations. 

Third Security, LLC (“Third Security”) is a venture capital firm characterized by an expanding global perspective and a distinctively patient approach. On behalf of our Affiliated Investment Funds, Third Security evaluates opportunities in a wide range of industries, but principally focuses on emerging through late-stage investments in life-sciences companies. Third Security strives to unlock value through active management of selective investments in companies that it considers to be strategically positioned to lead their respective fields.

Current Issue

Cover image of Fruit Growers News (FGN) July 2024 issue.

Talking tech: New app innovations aid growers

Smart tech wipes out pests: The latest trends in spraying automation

New Geneva rootstocks to help apple growers with size, yield, disease

Georgia peach success: Pearson Farm’s six generations find orchard happiness

FIRA preview: Tree fruit tech options abound at ag robotics conference

Fresh Views: Grapevine disease management tackled

Farm Market & Agritourism: Insights from the 2023 farm markets survey

National Plant Diagnostic Network


see all current issue »

Be sure to check out our other specialty agriculture brands

produceprocessingsm Organic Grower