Cosmic Crisp is a new apple variety, known during its long development period as WA38. It was introduced to growers in 2016 and first shipments to consumers are expected in 2019.
WA38 was developed at Washington State University by Bruce Barritt, who led its apple-breeding program in the 1990s. It was one of thousands of crosses between Enterprise and Honeycrisp - the former known for its storage and disease-resistance, the latter wildly popular in the USA for its crisp crunchy texture. The marketing objective for Cosmic Crisp is clearly to try to achieve the same success that Honeycrisp enjoyed when it first arrived.
Like many new apple varieties Cosmic Crisp is trademarked and only licensed growers can plant trees. Interestingly, Cosmic Crisp is currently only available to growers in the state of Washington - and although millions of trees have been planted in a very short time in Washington, the idea is to keep Cosmic Crisp as a premium variety for the time being.