"The industrial tomato campaign is currently being planned and the stage of transplants depends on the area of reference. Apulia started in late March, while the Caserta area started early after stopping due to the frost in March," reports Filittpo Torrente, who runs his family business.
In the photo: Filippo Torrente.
According to a few producers from southern Italy, 10% more industrial tomatoes will be planted compared to 2020. "There are no water procurement problems in Apulia, so there should be no problems if the weather remains good."
La Torrente is one of the largest processing businesses in southern Italy, whose brand identifies a wide range of Italian tomato products from Capitanata (Apulia), Basilicata and Campania in particular. 60 thousand tons of tomatoes are grown, including traditional and organic types, during each campaign.
The brand includes around 80 tomato products, including whole and peeled tomatoes, purées and filets as well as a premium range. These products are obtained processing over 10 varieties of tomatoes, including red oblong and round ones, yellow tomatoes, San Marzano from the sarnese nocerino area, tomatoes from Piennolo del Vesuvio, corbarino tomatoes and tomatoes from the hills.
"A lot has changed in over 50 years. I still remember tomatoes being harvested by hand during three cycles to respect ripening cycles. Harvesting is now mechanical, considering we plant resistant tomatoes guaranteed by selected seeds that ripe uniformly. The climate changed a lot, which makes it difficult to make precise forecasts. What has not changed is the traditional approach with which we grow our tomatoes, so as to keep making a difference when it comes to quality."
La Torrente follows the various production phases with a lot of attention thanks to close relationships with growers, who can supply high-quality produce thanks to their experience and skill. Advanced technology is combined with the most genuine traditions that respect he health and sustainability of productions. The company holds leading international certifications and boasts a facility covering 15,000 sq m, 4 production lines and two 80,000 warehouses to store the produce.
"When it comes to planning, we are paying a lot of attention to the next campaign, as the pandemic has been affecting sales for over a year. Although we conquered new market shares in 2020, we need to act with caution and rationality. The 2021 campaign started with little stock after many hoarded small grades during the first lockdown of March 2020. Nonetheless, we managed to supply the big retail chain with regulated prices so as to provide stability to the large Italian and foreign platforms. We will continue doing so, considering that our energies are currently focused on managing stocks and planning the 2021 production."
85% of the turnover comes from the domestic market, while the remaining 15% comes from abroad, especially from Spain - where the brand is particularly appreciated by the H&R sector - the UK, the US, Canada, Japan and India.