On World Fruit Day, Dole Is Seeking Absolution From Pope Francis

Fruit producer Dole is tired of apples getting a bad reputation as the cause of The Original Sin, and it's going straight to the top to get things amended according to a recent press release. In recognition of World Fruit Day, Dole has written a letter to Pope Francis himself seeking absolution for the mischaracterization of apples as the "forbidden fruit."

In the Abrahamic religion's creation story, the first man and woman, Adam and Eve, are instructed by God to eat fruit from any tree in the Garden of Eden, except the one in the middle (via MIT). When they are tricked into disobeying this singular rule, they commit what comes to be known as "the original sin." While the original text simply described a fruit, thanks to a Latin pun, it became commonly depicted and referred to as an apple.

According to NPR, Pope Damascus asked his leading scriptural scholar Jerome to translate the bible from the original Hebrew into Latin in the Fourth Century A.D. This meant Jerome had to decide what the Hebrew word peri (meaning any kind of fruit) would be translated into. The Latin word for apple, malus, happened to have a double meaning as both evil and apple, making it the most effective substitute. Since then, apples have been used in artistic depictions throughout the centuries. Thus, a bad pun has forever tainted the reputation of red delicious everywhere (via National Geographic).

No fruit should be forbidden

According to a press release, to save the soul of the apple, Dole published a letter to Pope Francis in the Italian newspaper "La Repubblica," asking the Pope to help turn the apple's reputation from "original sin" to "original snack." With great humility, it asks that the Pope consider changing the word 'fruit' in the bible to something else. It suggests a less nutritious food choice would capture the illicit nature of original sin better than the apple. If amending the holy text of a religion followed by 1.2 billion people is too big of a request, it asks for a simple message of support instead.

"Today, more than ever, no fruit should be forbidden," concludes the letter.

Dole includes a list of the apple's other creative and scientific contributions to the world, such as inspiring Newton's Law of Gravitation (via Britannica). It also stresses that a more positive image for fruit could help shift his followers' eating habits in a healthier direction.

"We believe if we can resolve this misrepresentation of fruit, we can start a new global narrative that focuses on its benefits, and creates new, healthier eating habits that are consistent to our purpose to bring good nutrition to all," said President of Dole Packaged Foods & Beverages Group Pier Luigi Sigismondi.