RZ has surprises in all segments from soil cultivation, developing countries to organics, convenience and snacking segments.
Rijk Zwaan has invested a lot in variety development lately for the Mediterranean soil type cultivation areas such as found in Spain, Turkey, Africa and also Mexico. “Our focus for developing countries is to propose varieties for soil cultivation with a better yield, resistance and taste,” said Johan Vis, Rijk Zwaan’s head of marketing. He recalls the tremendous potential of the Asian region as the largest populated area in the world. “Africa will soon become the second most populated region; it has become a major target for us,” Vis said.
A world of sensations
As for the greater value trends in developed markets like Europe and the US, Rijk Zwaan continues to improve its portfolio in every segment, such as organics, convenience, processing and snacking. “We are adding more sensational varieties to our portfolio of snacking varieties, with more flavours, colours and old style combinations.” He sees these trends are already appearing in the US market.
Among new snack items by Rijk Zwaan there are very colourful tomatoes, pear-shaped oranges, orange blocky tomatoes and yellow mini plums. “Another major trend is the pink tomato segment, which is the major one in Eastern Europe. RZ’s aim with pink tomatoes is for them to be sweet and juicy, with a specific taste and profile.”
In the case of the orange colour segment, RZ tomato varieties are being associated with lemonade and fruity taste. “We will continue to come up with new colours, shapes and sensations in future.”
Internal red, the visible taste
In the bigger tomato size, of 60-160 grams, RZ is introducing more “internal red” type varieties, with a nice deep red colour and good flavour, in order to be “visibly tasty”. In the sensational segment, Rijk Zwaan analyses and demonstrates the taste difference based on consumer trials carried out together with Wageningen University, using measured parameters. New concepts like Silk Pink and Florentina have been successfully introduced since last year. “Florentino has a marvellous taste, a plum shape and is nice looking, like a snack variety,” Vis said.
Among other new introductions in the sensational segment are the 72245 variety code for an internal red variety of sensational flavour, and the Ternetto, which is great tasting, highly productive, small and weighs around 15/20 g. The 72187 is also the new code for a pear-shaped tomato of remarkable flavour.
Snack mixes with cucumbers, too
Cucumbers and other salad vegetables are not forgotten in RZ’s new trend of innovations. There are the new shorter and bi-colour snack cucumbers. “The mix of snack cucumber varieties is now a possibility, like the new white and green variety Quirk’” Vis said. Quinton is other innovation in the segment: a new light green cucumber, and also Quarto, a dark green snack variety.
Raymos RZ and Ramywin RZ: the new RZ vine tomatoes
Raymos RZ and Ramywin RZ are vine tomatoes, the former sold as an early tomato and the latter as a late variety. The company thus covers all the crop cycles and can have the product available throughout the year.
Fundamentally, the two varieties are characteristic for maintaining their calibre and quality all year round, with their deep red colour, good firmness and resistance to the leaf curl virus and powdery mildew (Lt). Magallanes RZ is a loose tomato that keeps its quality and G calibre throughout the long cycle. Manuel Hernandez Fernandez, Rijk Zwaan Ibérica’s tomato crop specialist, says: “Customers are demanding more and more flavour and innovative products on the shelves that are easily distinguishable.”
This article appeared in edition 143 (May/June 2016) of Eurofresh Distribution magazine. Read more from that issue here: www.eurofresh-distribution.com/magazine/143-2016-mayjune