When peaches are ripe in Ontario, local fruit stands are crowded with folks who don’t mind the fuzzy outer skin. Until recently, fuzz-haters had limited alternatives, but now, tender-fruit farmers in Ontario are responding to fuzz critics, and are investing in hectares of the peach’s soft-skinned cousin; nectarines. So much so, that in 2017, nectarines made up 15 per cent of all tender fruit hectares, which also includes peaches, plums, apricots and pears. And thanks to modern research, the fruit are now consistently produced with a sweet taste, cold tolerance and increased size.

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