The sweet corn harvest in Baden-Württemberg started this week - just in time for the planned start of the season. However, some measures are necessary to harvest a good and tasty product, said Moritz Schmälzle of the same-named organic nursery based in Sinzheim. "The larva of the corn borer e.g. can burrow tunnel-like trenches in the cobs. To avoid this, we use parasitic wasps. Crows also like to eat sweetcorn. To discourage them, we flood the field with high-frequency sound waves that are inaudible to the human ear. However, given our irrigation system, the general growing conditions at our site are quite good."
Left: Fresh organic sweetcorn
Right: Moritz and Georg Schmälzle
Difficult competition with convenience products
The sweetcorn has been grown seasonally on the organic farm for many years. This classic summer product is distributed either through its own subscription service or through the Edeka head office and wholesale in the regional retail trade. "I would say that sweetcorn is a vanishing product segment. In my opinion, sweetcorn does not pay much attention to its regional origin. On the other hand, the fresh produce tastes much better, which is still a significant factor."
In contrast to sweet corn -which is grown on a rather small scale- the vegetables (mainly tomatoes and aubergines) from the company glasshouse currently form the core range of biodynamic gardening. However, new vegetable varieties are added to the product range at regular intervals.