Rijk Zwaan’s efficient fresh-cut salad solution for soil and hydroponic cultivation
Salanova® Teenleaf is an innovative salad concept. In terms of size, this ‘teenager’ is halfway between a babyleaf and a fully mature head of lettuce, combining the best of both worlds. These lettuce varieties are already successfully grown in high density in soil, harvested mechanically and used in all kinds of fresh-cut salad blends in the US and Australia. And now, vegetable breeding company Rijk Zwaan is introducing a choice of new Teenleaf varieties for high-density hydroponic production.
The Teenleaf salad concept is a spin-off from Salanova – the company’s ‘one cut, ready’ lettuce range. Bauke van Lenteren, fresh-cut specialist said: “Salanova Teenleaf is a more efficient method for the production and processing of fresh-cut salad blends. Teenleaf varieties are suitable for high-density growing, both indoors and outdoors, machine harvestable, and because they are harvested slightly later than babyleaf, they generate a higher yield. Thanks to the ‘one cut, ready’ principle they immediately separate into individual leaves. This enables fresh-cut companies to use them in appealing ready-to-eat salad blends with higher net usability and less waste than fully mature lettuce. The leaves are a little more robust than babyleaf, but still ‘forkable’ for consumers.”
Teenleaf varieties for hydroponics
As a new development, Rijk Zwaan is introducing a range of Salanova Teenleaf varieties for hydroponics, a production method that is rapidly gaining ground worldwide. Peter Sonneveld, specialist in hydroponics, said: “We’ve noticed that fresh-cut companies are looking for a clean, residue-free product that can be grown locally all year round. Hydroponics ticks all the boxes. Growers can produce Salanova Teenleaf varieties in a range of hydroponic systems. Teenleaf is ideal for machine harvesting right from the hydroponic system and produces a high annual yield in terms of kilos per square metre.” Salanova Teenleaf varieties are available in a wide choice of colours, textures and leaf shapes, so a salad blend can be mixed to suit every consumers preference: sweet and crunchy, mild and colourful, or premium and delicate.
Photo: Rijk Zwaan