In the giant greenhouses in Alperstedt, Germany, 2800 tons of cocktail and 3500 tons of vine tomatoes are ripening. The harvest at Gemüsering Thüringen will begin at the end of March. There are bell peppers growing in the 20 hectare farm as well. The growers expect a yield of 1200 tons.
The Gemüsering Thüringen team / Image: Gemüsering Thüringen GmbH
Good results for Brioso
On eight hectares, the team cultivates cocktail tomatoes - the Brioso variety in particular. "It has a nice red color and is fruity and juicy", says grower Cornelia Hiller, which is why this strain has been part of the program for some time. The vegetable growers expect a yield of 2800 tons.
On another five hectares, the vine tomatoes Lyterno grow up in the air. The company is following the wishes of the customers here: Lyterno has been a popular variety for many years.
New are, however, the plum cocktail tomatoes, which are grown in Alperstedt on almost one hectare. The variety was tested last year and has really proven itself, explains the plant manager. She estimates that 300 tonnes of the egg-shaped tomatoes can be harvested this year.
On another five hectares, sweet peppers of all colors and pointed peppers are grown. Planned here are 1200 tons. Here is the first harvest already on March 20 in the calendar. "The plants were already planted in early December," she explains.
May to August
The time from May to August is the main season for the company. Then 200 employees will be working. It's no secret that Cornelia Hiller finds it more difficult to find employees. Due to the many logistics companies that exist in the meantime in the Erfurt area, the competition was great. To be physically demanding and to be up all day is a scare away from young people, Cornelia explains.
Thus, the company hires unskilled employees, who are taught the basic knowledge with a lot of energy. The majority of the employees now come from Hungary, Poland and Romania. Many of them are there throughout the year and have settled here.
Most of the harvested tomatoes and peppers remain in Thuringia. But also to Brandenburg, Baden-Württemberg and Bavaria goes the vegetables. The Togaz, the Thuringian fruit and vegetable sales center, takes over the sale to the food retail trade.