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Using tomatoes to study environmentally-friendly farming techniques

Climate change is one of the most discussed and debated topics. It will bring about several consequences, with desertification being one of the most severe and concerning, especially for agriculture and crops. This problem is the starting point of the European research project TomRes (A Novel and Integrated Approach to Increase Multiple and Combined Stress Tolerance in Plants Using Tomato as a Model), that chose the tomato as a biological and agronomical model crop to develop a sustainable and resilient product that needs less water and fertilizers during cultivation. This multidisciplinary project involves 25 European institutions including universities and research centres. TomRes is funded by the Horizon2020 program, the largest European innovation program.

Tomato is one of the most consumed vegetable products all over the world, as it can be consumed either fresh or cooked in many ways. Tomato production is constantly growing, and Europe is one of the main producers of tomatoes, with more than 24 million tons being produced in 2017. The cultivation of tomatoes can take place both in the field and in the greenhouse. However, the major problems all tomato farmers face is combined water (demand: 180 L/kg) and nutrient stress. Solutions are thus needed to protect crop yields, while preserving the environment.

Read the full article at The Journal of the Institute of Food Science & Technology

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