In memoriam: Jim Beutel
Jim Beutel, UC ANR Cooperative Extension specialist emeritus, died Dec. 28 at the age of 88 in Vacaville. The pomologist, who joined UC Davis in 1963, was instrumental in introducing kiwifruit in the 1970s and Asian pears in the 1980s to California growers.
In a 1977 article he wrote that “the kiwifruit's external appearance is not particularly attractive.” But, he added, “the flesh is an attractive emerald green color and has numerous small, jet-black, edible seeds.”
He thought that consumers may like the Asian pear because it can be eaten as soon as it is harvested. “This ready-to-eat feature may make them more acceptable to some people than European pears that are usually served when soft and juicy, which takes about a week to occur after removal from cold storage,” Beutel wrote in 1988.
Read more about Beutel's career in UC Davis' Dateline at https://www.ucdavis.edu/news/memoriam-jim-beutel-retired-pomologist.