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New lettuce discolours less rapidly thanks to ‘KNOX’
KNOX extends shelf-life by about two days. According to Convenience Manager Bauke van Lenteren, the company directly responds to one of the main wishes of fresh cut companies with this development. "KNOX ensures you do not necessarily need low-oxygen packaging for lettuce; this allows for lower costs and more options when blending. This means getting rid of the negative smell that is characteristic of opening low-oxygen packaging."
KNOX is also beneficial for the rest of the chain. For example, the extended shelf life gives retailers a better stock position and less waste. "It is self-evident that these benefits will also lead to a better end consumer experience. The consumer can enjoy the bag of pre-packaged salad for a longer time," says Van Lenteren. "We expect KNOX to lead to higher purchasing frequency, and therefore increased consumption of lettuce."
Rijk Zwaan worked on the development of KNOX for a total of 10 years. The company developed an assessment test in house in order to determine the presence of the trait, and then found it in a breeding greenhouse. The unique effect was confirmed in various laboratory tests and large scale factory trials. The property was subsequently crossed into various lettuce types as soon as possible.
Visitors to Rijk Zwaan’s ‘Leafy Event’ may view the first KNOX varieties this week. About 10 varieties in different lettuce types now have this property. These varieties were successfully tested in collaboration with growers and fresh cut companies. Through their own crop advisor, growers worldwide may request trial seeds. The expectation is that the range of KNOX-based varieties will quickly be expanded in the next few years.
For more information:
Ton van Leeuwen
Tel: + 31 6 304 031 19+ 31 6 304 031 19
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