How do you like them apples?

Photo by  rawpixel  on  Unsplash

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

This morning, I bought an apple. A Granny Smith. My favourite. For 40p. 

It got me thinking…    

How many apples could we buy with Apple’s market capitalisation?

And what - if you were so inclined - could you do with them?

Well, here are some options. 

Apple has a market capitalisation of $1,000,000,000,000.

An apple costs 40p or, for the sake of argument and rounding sanity, 50c.

So, if everyone sold their Apple shares, we could buy 2,000,000,000,000 apples.

That’s 2 trillion apples. Abundant apples.

Firstly, let’s feed the world.

With 7.2 billion people on this earth, it’d be mean of us not to share our apples around.

So, if we were even about it, everyone on earth could have 278 apples. 

What a lovely thought. Crumble and turnovers for all.

Next, what could we achieve if we piled Apple’s apples one atop another? All sorts, I should think. Let’s build an apple tower.

Well, the apple in front of me is 8 cm high. It's a nice, round apple. A good size. I chose it myself.

So, if we stacked Apple’s apples, the height of the stack would be 16,000,000,000,000 cm. 

That’s 16 trillion centimetres.

Or, 160,000,000,000 metres. 

Or, 160,000,000 kilometres.                 

Now, the distance from the earth to the moon is, according to my estimations (and Google's) 384,400 km. 

So, our stack of apples could go to the moon 416 times. 

Or, our stack of apples could go to the moon and back 208 times. 

Alternatively, it’s known to me (and Google) that the distance around the world is 40,075 km. 

So, our stack of apples could go around the world 3,993 times. 

Blimey. That’s a big stack or a long line of apples. 

But, what if we didn’t want to stack them one atop the other? What if we lumped them together? How big would that lump be? I should think pretty big. 

Using some GCSE maths, I estimate the volume of my apple to be about 250 cm cubed. 

So, if we neatly packed em and squashed em in a bit, the volume of Apple's apples would be 500,000,000,000,000 cm cubed.

Or, 5,000,000,000,000 m cubed.

Or, 5,000,000,000 km cubed.        

Now, the volume of Wembley Stadium is 1,139,100 m cubed.             

So, Apple's apples would fill Wembley 4,389,430 times. 

Or, the volume of the moon is 21,900,000,000 km cubed. 

So, our apples would fill just under a quarter of the inside of the moon.


Ok, ok, slow down, this is getting out of hand. We wouldn’t be able to fill the moon with apples, likely because we couldn’t lift all those apples up there in the first place. This amount of apples must be heavy, right? Well, let’s find out. 

The weight of my Granny Smith is, give or take a gram or two, 130 grams. 

So, the total weight of Apple's apples would be 260,000,000,000,000 grams. 

Or, 260,000,000,000 kgs. 

Or, 260,000,000 tonnes. 

Now, The Great Wall of China is pretty much the heaviest thing on earth. It weighs, boffins say, about 60,000,000 tonnes.

So, Apple's apples would weigh about the same as four and a half Great Walls.

Phewph. So Apple’s apples weigh a lot. They weigh a lot of walls. 

But hang on... IF - and, admittedly, it’s a big if - Apple shareholders decided that liquidating all of their shares in the most successful company in the history of capitalism in order to buy apples and only apples was a good idea, would we, the good people of the world, be able to fulfil their order? Could we give Apple their apples? 

Well, if an average apple tree produces about 300 apples per year.

The number of apple trees needed to grow Apple’s apples would be - precisely - 6,666,666,667.

My Apple experts tell me you can grow 84 trees per acre. 

So, in order to grow Apple’s apples, you’d need 79,365,079 acres. 

Or, 321,179 km squared. 

And this would be the same as entirely covering Norway in Apple’s apple trees. Sorry Norway. 

So, good news is, one option is to use Norway. Bad news is, Norweigians, pack yer bags. 

Or, another option to give Apple their apples, is that we could just use the apples that the global apple community currently produces to satisfy the apple order from ex-Apple shareholders. 

I've had a look and in 2016, the entire world produced 89,329,179 tonnes of apples.

So, ex-Apple shareholders could buy the world's entire apple production for the next 1 year and 9 months to get their $1 trillion worth of apples. 

Which, to conclude, is a lot of apples for Apple.          

Edward Playfair