Enza Zaden's breeders are constantly working to develop healthy and delicious vegetables. The trend of healthy and sensible food is becoming increasingly popular. Snack vegetables have grown in popularity in recent years and people are becoming increasingly conscious of what they eat. During Asia Fruit Logistica, tomatoes, snack tomatoes, mini sweet peppers, bitter gourd and lettuce will be in the spotlight at Enza Zaden's booth. Enza Zaden's breeders tell us why these products in particular are so good for you.
TomatoMartijn van Stee, Senior Breeder Tomato: "Tomato is a natural source of a range of vitamins (A, B1, B3, B6, C, E and K). However, it is better known for containing the antioxidant 'lycopene'. Lycopene protects against free radicals that are generated by excessive sun exposure. The substance lycopene in the tomato acts as an active antioxidant against these free radicals. Enza Zaden's tomato breeding programme screens our varieties according to the amount of lycopene they contain. There are also breeding projects to increase lycopene levels in tomatoes. Partly for the health aspect, but also because lycopene gives a very beautiful deep red colour, which makes the tomato more appealing."
PepperWouter Lindeman, Crop Breeding Manager Pepper: "Sweet peppers are among the healthiest vegetables you can eat. Besides being low in calories and a great source of vitamin C they also contain vitamins E, B1 and B2. What’s more they are bursting with minerals such as calcium, potassium and iron. Minerals and vitamins are indispensable for all the processes taking place in your body. Sweet peppers contain no fewer than 30 different carotenoids. These powerful antioxidants give your immune system a health boost.”
Bitter gourdJoep van Balen, Product Development Manager Asia Open Fields Crops Breeding: "Particularly in Asia, bitter gourd is a popular vegetable for health reasons. You don't have to explain to people in that region that it's healthy and why they should be eating it. For those less familiar with this product, it's good to know that bitter gourd contains an insulin-like protein that can act as an insulin substitute for people with Type 2 diabetes. Even though there is still no scientific evidence for this, it's the reason that it’s so popular in many Asian countries.”
LettucePeter Conijn, Senior Breeder Leafy Vegetables: “Lettuce is one of the most low-calorie vegetables, containing only around 13 kcal per 100 grams. On top of that, vitamins in lettuce are plentiful. Its fresh leaves are an excellent source of several vitamins A, K and beta-carotene. The higher concentrations of vitamin A are found in darker green lettuces. Vitamin A is required for maintaining healthy skin, and is essential for vision.”
Visit us at our booth
At our booth during the Asia Fruit Logistica our chef will surprise you with tasty bites made of these unique vegetables. Please visit us at booth H-21.