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"more than Mexico: "healthy fast food champion"

The Netherlands, the world's largest tomato exporter

The AD newspaper devoted a lot of attention to the tomato this week as The Netherlands was named the world's largest tomato exporter. The AD reported that the latest export figures show that The Netherlands has overtaken Mexico, the former number 1. Last year the Dutch agriculture and horticulture sector sold about $1.8 billion (around 1.3 billion Euro) in tomatoes across their borders, while Mexico "only" exported 1.7 billion dollars worth. The two tomato superpowers trade at a respectful distance, followed by Spain which exported $1.2 billion in tomatoes. The remaining two of the top 5, were Turkey and France with no more than four hundred million earned in exporting tomatoes. "What the figures do show is that the tomato sector is doing very well," says Sharon Dijksma Minister of Economic Affairs.

Although the Dutch tomato was once reviled, the Germans calling it a 'water bomb,' Dutch growers sought a solution to save their reputation. They came up with 'tomatoes on the vine,' explained Miranda van den Ende, manager of Tomato world. "This tomato was not picked when green, but ended up ripe in the shop.'

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