When I think of fall I think of two things: Apples and Pumpkins. I never really considered them a competition, however, as each serves its own unique purpose.

It has come to my attention that this fall there may just be some competition. Many chains are now introducing apples into categories previously ruled by pumpkin, and vice versa.

For starters, the infamous Pumpkin Spiced Latte now has some competition. Starbucks has introduced their Apple Crisp Macchiato, which is made with apple and brown sugar flavors and topped with a caramelized apple drizzle made of apple puree.

Dunkin', America's other favorite place for a coffee, has also implemented apple beverages such as an apple cranberry refresher and an apple cranberry coconut refresher. And don’t forget the apple cider donut.

This is not the first time Dunkin' and Starbucks have introduced fall flavors, but it is one of the first times that pumpkin and apple will go head to head.

While both flavors are extremely attractive, at least to me, I do wonder which will outsell the other. On one hand, pumpkin spice has been a fan favorite for over 20 years now, but is it still as exciting to drink as it was back then?

Chains like Starbucks and Dunkin are in an endless competition to create new trends, and apple may be the perfect opportunity to do so.

While I am pretty hesitant to indulge in apple macchiato, I will definitely be picking up an apple cider donut along with a pumpkin flavored coffee. Who said we can’t live the best of both worlds?

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco. Any opinions expressed are Judi Franco’s own.

NJ teachers and educators caught in sex crime busts

Over the past few years, state lawmakers have taken on the challenge of dealing with accused child predators among the ranks of teachers and educators.

In 2018, the so-called “pass the trash” law went into effect, requiring stricter New Jersey school background checks related to child abuse and sexual misconduct.

The follow individuals were arrested over the past several years. Some have been convicted and sentenced to prison, while others have accepted plea deals for probation.

Others cases are still pending, including some court delays amid the COVID-19 pandemic.