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Houweling’s tomatoes focused on flavor

Houweling’s Tomatoes has been growing hydroponic greenhouse tomatoes since company CEO Casey Houweling built British Columbia’s first large-scale tomato greenhouse farm in 1985. He reflects; “It’s been nearly 30 years since we planted our first 6 acres of Beefsteak tomatoes in Delta, BC. Acceptance for greenhouse tomatoes was slow to build, but the quality and consistency made it a winner. Unfortunately, somewhere along the way the industry put more focus on yield and shelf-life at the expense of flavour. It has only been the last few years that we have been able to see the pendulum swing back towards taste and that is a good thing.”

In the last 3 years, the team at Houweling’s in partnership with seed companies from around the world has conducted trials of over 100 new varieties. These trials have led to the launch of new products such as Houweling’s Signature Medley Snacking Tomatoes, Signature Heirloom Tomatoes and the decision to move 100% of its grape tomato acreage to a higher flavour, lesser yielding variety. Houweling notes; “In a competitive market with rising cost pressures, it is not easy to make a decision to take 10% less yield, but I firmly believe delivering a consistent, premium eating experience will ensure Houweling’s Tomatoes long-term success.”

David Bell, Houweling’s CMO commented; “It’s easy to say you are focused on flavour, but ultimately consumers will be the judge when they taste your products. Consistency is key and that is why our commitment is to pack only Houweling’s grown product in the Houweling’s label. This ensures authenticity and dependability that consumers can count on.”

Research shows a sharp increase in consumer preference and demand for higher flavour varieties. The rise in popularity of the snacking tomato category is influenced by factors such as convenience and health, but ultimately if it doesn’t taste great, consumers won’t return. Houweling notes; “We made the switch to our Sweetoms grape variety in Canada last season and have seen our market share grow exponentially, making the switch company wide a no-brainer. I tell people if they really want to see what a difference it makes, give their kids a clamshell and watch them disappear.”

Year-round, great tasting, locally grown tomatoes have become Houweling’s Tomatoes signature and the building blocks for the growth and long-term success of the brand. This is encompassed in the company commitment to ‘Mastery Under Glass’ and is why Casey Houweling’s signature is on every box. Houweling closes with; “My father’s dedication to quality and hard work was instilled in me from a very young age. It has been nearly 20 years since he passed and that commitment to excellence continues to inspire and motivate me to leave a legacy that would make him proud.”

Houweling’s Tomatoes grows year-round, sustainable greenhouse tomatoes on 175 acres in Camarillo, CA, and Delta, BC. In January of 2015, Houweling’s will begin harvesting from their new 28 acre farm in Mona, UT. Led by Casey Houweling and his team, the company is committed to growing a full array of flavourful, sustainably grown, year-round tomatoes.

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