After years of searching for three uniform sweet pointed pepper varieties to put in their three-color mix, grower Thimo van Marrewijk of nursery Het Westland has finally found the right combination this year. So now, it’s time to really start rolling out the mix that could already be found on the shelves of a variety of retailers. “I am now also completely convinced of my product and have expanded on the range of colors on the shelf.”
The right combination of varieties
When Thimo started as a grower in 2011, he still cultivated bell peppers and even cucumbers. A year later, he began with his first trials with pointed peppers, first only orange ones, and since 2014 he focused entirely on a three-color mix. “I have tried every variety in the past four years in my search for the ideal combination in terms of shelf life, taste, and uniformity of the fruits. Enza Zaden has been breeding specifically for the mix, and the varieties now have a long shelf life and have a brix value of at least 8, which was an important factor to me.”
Stable delivery, peaceful growing
The first mixes were flow packed at the end of May and on the shelves by the beginning of April. Through Harvest House, the grower is selling the mixes to retail costumers under their private label or the label Colourful Ladies of Harvest House.
Colourful Ladies stands for the colorful character of the fruits and has a festive appearance. With a QR code, you are easily linked up to the story behind the concept of grower Thimo.
Screenshots from a Facebook video. Rainbow Kleinpack does the flow packing.
Multiple parties have already shown interest, some of which already have put the mix on their shelves. “The cultivation is currently adequate enough to provide for the first costumers and to measure the interest of potential customers. I expect to be able to offer more next year. Anyway, it is important to have a stable production available of the three colors yellow, orange, and red throughout the entire cultivation.”
Colourful Ladies is the label specially designed for the three color mix.
Red ‘no longer a specialty’
There is no day or week market with the three-color mix, and the product is still too small for that. In red, which has grown to be a pretty substantive product group of its own in the past few years, there is daily and weekly marketing, besides the majority that goes through retail costumers under contract. “This year is a special one due to the corona crisis. Especially during the time people were stocking up on products, we saw a huge increase in demand from retail, so not much was left for the day and week trade. A huge advantage for our product is the fact that it is no longer seen as a ‘specialty’, so we can keep our spot on the shelves.”
High production in the time to come
Last week there was a slight decrease in demand, but in the coming weeks it will be busy, Thimo expects. “The productions are high and will be even higher next week due to the amount of sunlight we have now.” It will also become warmer. “When the weather gets warm, there is always an increase in demand from, among others, people who are into barbecuing. We consciously bet on that with our pointed peppers.”
For more information:
Plant nursery Het Westland
Thimo van Marrewijk