Skip to comments.Why supermarket tomatoes tend to taste bland
Posted on 06/30/2012 2:03:31 AM PDT by Racehorse
The mass-produced tomatoes we buy at the grocery store tend to taste more like cardboard than fruit. Now researchers have discovered one reason why: a genetic mutation, common in store-bought tomatoes, that reduces the amount of sugar and other tasty compounds in the fruit.
But the new study, published this week in Science, found that the mutation that leads to the uniform appearance of most store-bought tomatoes has an unintended consequence: It disrupts the production of a protein responsible for the fruit's production of sugar.
The study authors set out to pin down the genetic change that makes tomatoes lose their dark-green top. They focused their attention on two genes GLK1 and GLK2 both known to be crucial for harvesting energy from sunlight in plant leaves.
They found that GLK2 is active in fruit as well as leaves but that in uniformly colored tomatoes, it is inactivated.
Adding back an active GLK2 gene to bland, commercial-style tomatoes through genetic engineering created tomatoes that had the heirloom-style dark-green hue. The darker green comes from greater numbers of structures called chloroplasts that harvest energy from sunlight.
The harvested energy is stored as starches, which are converted to sugars when the tomatoes ripen.
The vast majority 70% to 80% of the sugar in tomatoes travels to the fruit from the leaves of the plant. But the remaining amount of sugar is produced in the fruit. This contribution is largely wiped out in uniform, commercial-style tomatoes and thus they won't be as sweet.
(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...
My mother introduced me to a new (to me) variety from her garden recently. It’s the Cherokee tomato. Not real pretty but it’s delicious. It’s one of the old varieties.
Ping to the Weekly Gardening List?
We had great tomatoes this year despite of the heat.
Have dehydrated over 120 lbs of them into which fits into little over a 5 gallon bucket.
Tomatoe Chips, very tasty. Melt in your mouth good.
The heirlooms are the best. Last year, one of the varieties I planted was a Russian black. Bad year last, for tomatoes all around, but they were the best, by far.
I bought a bunch of starters this year and they have green fruit on them, but a bunch of plants germinated from last years green ones that I left.
I have high hopes for the plants that germinated. As you work a vegetable garden, you find that seeds from the plants that did good the year before are often way, way better than any store bought seeds. Tomatoes seem to be one of the plants that can adapt well to local conditions. Keeping my fingers crossed!
But my 6 tomato plants in my garden are doing fine and in about 15 days.....yum, yum.
Gotta feel sorry (yeah, right!) for our Mooselimb bros (and sistahs) who have been told that it is "Haram" (bad/forbidden) to Eat tomato, cuz....wait for it...when you cut into one, you end up (Yikes!) seeing a depiction of a Cross.
Yep, in that wonderful, new, "Democratic" Republic that our Dear Leader is soooooo excited about (Egypt) the ever sooooo "Tolerant" practitioners of the "Religion of Pieces" had (since somewhat rescinded when they were made out to be the laughing stock of the world) told their Sheeple believers not to indulge in this wonderful fruit or vegetable....take your pick.
What I really like (and must drive the hordes of barbarian, cultists batty, is that in the example we have seen, not only does it resemble a Cross, but [the] Cross worn by the Knights Templars during the Crusades.
Our local HEB grogery chain here in Tx has an advertisment out where a farmer standing out in his tomatoe patch is bragging on being their supplier and how great his ‘home grown’ tomatoes are at HEB.
What liars. They taste like cardboard.
Made me so mad I emailed them and told them off. LOL
They answered and denied it.
The Cherokee is kind of purple, right? Every year they sell it at my local garden center. It’s an heirloom.
I grow Rutgers which is considered the Jersey tomato.
Mine worked just not as depicted.
You would almost have to tie the stalk/stem down to make it grow downward like that.
Best results were with cherry tomatoes.
Yes it is. It has more of an acidic taste than most tomatoes but that might be a factor of the soil it’s grown in.
I have very acidic soil. Good for my hydrangeas but not much else!!
I love my tasty grape tomatoes growing in my global buckets in the yard. Two plants produce enough for daily salads. I did order some seeds for purple and black cherry tomatoes. I do not seem to have any luck with large ones the bugs and the birds have too much time to find them.
I was thinking it was probably the radiation they use to make green tomatoes red that was killing the flavor.
This may explain the science but not the real reason. I grew up with delicious tomatoes, especially Jersey Beefsteaks. Farmers were made to discontinue those in favor of bland tomatoes that can survive longer in train cars and in stores. There is some effort to rediscover the “heirloom” tomatoes but its very sad what was done.
a lot of them are lacking taste because they are picked green, held in coolers until needed for market and then raised in temperature, gassed with nitrogen to turn them red (actually a pinkish red color) within a couple of days and put into the market!
I’m afraid to go into my garden this morning to see how my tomatoes are faring! I only have one tiny little bead of a tomato although lots of yellow flowers.
I’d like to grow paprika! What pepper is it?
The best tomato I’ve ever had was from my dad’s garden about two seconds after I picked it.
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