southeastfarmpress.com; by Robert H. Wells, University of Florida; Supermarket tomatoes that taste like heirlooms are closer to reaching grocery aisles as a result of a discovery from the University of Florida.
A team of researchers, including members of UF’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, have identified the chemicals inside heirloom tomatoes that make people enjoy their taste, and the discovery is expected to enable them to create better-tasting tomatoes for the commercial market.
Heirloom tomatoes are old varieties not bred for large-scale production and prized for their true tomato taste; something that many believe has been lost in commercial tomatoes.
The research is detailed online in the May 24 issue of Current Biology.
Florida is a top producer of fresh tomatoes, and the state’s crop for 2010-2011 was valued at $431 million.