Dutch vegetable breeder Rijk Zwaan has developed a new innovation, dubbed Knox, which the company believes will help it to rapidly grow the convenience lettuce segment in Asia.
The company revealed that it would present the new concept at next week’s Asia Fruit Logistica exhibition in Hong Kong.
According to Rijk Zwaan, Knox is a natural solution that combats pink discoloration, thereby extending the shelf-life of pre-cut lettuce by at least two days, even given imperfections in the cold chain that are relatively common in Asia.
“Prepared fresh-cut lettuce is a relatively new product to Asian consumers,” said Jan Doldersum, the firm’s marketing and business development manager. “Most vegetables are eaten cooked or stir-fried. A fresh-looking lettuce that also lasts longer is more appealing to consumers. Hence, this longer-lasting lettuce enables restaurants, foodservice companies and retailers to tap into the convenience trend more effectively and increase their sales opportunities in Asia.”
Rijk Zwaan plans to use the exhibition to advise its partners on how to optimise Knox. “Retailers can improve their inventory situation, for example, while processing companies no longer need to pack the lettuce under low-oxygen conditions, plus they have more options to create blends of several different types,” the company stated in a press release. “More than ten of Rijk Zwaan’s lettuce varieties already contain this innovative, natural trait and that number is growing rapidly.”