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Sakata focusses on snack tomatoes in Dutch trial house
"All in all, there are around 100 varieties here, 70 of which are snack tomatoes," Pieter Vermeulen of Sakata says. One of the varieties in the greenhouse is Santa tomato Bellastar, which has been on the market for a few years now. "In the Netherlands it's grown on around four hectares, in other countries the acreage is bigger." Varieties from the Majestar series are also on display. Cherry tomato Ministar, with its bright red color and early vigor, also has a place in the greenhouse. And again this year, there's a lot of attention for the remarkably orange Oranjestar, which has been on the market for 4 years and is remarkably resistant to cracking. This special tomato will be grown on one hectare in the coming year, Vermeulen expects. "Those are the varieties you really need to choose with care. You need to know your market and your customers."
The team at Sakata has a particular interest in the performance of snack tomatoes in the chain. "This season, prices for snack tomatoes are fine – also because part of the acreage has gone. Sometimes it's scary to see the expansion plans growers have." Vermeulen emphasizes the importance of careful marketing in the niches. "They're special products."
Apart from the commercial varieties, the trial greenhouse also houses a number of other varieties that are ready, or nearly ready, for the market. The brix, crop development and production are carefully monitored, as are the performance and cultivation compared to the references.
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