Landgard has harvested the first German peppers of the season as the growers' cooperative looks to emulate its strong performance last year when it marketed 34,000 tonnes of fresh tomatoes and peppers.
The volume produced in 2017 was enough to supply all the residents of Hamburg, Munich and Frankfurt am Main with the two salad vegetables for a whole year, Landgard said.
In North Rhine-Westphalia, Schleswig-Holstein and Lower Saxony, companies in the Landgard cooperative have about 95ha of glasshouse production, using state-of-the-art techniques to offer year-round supply in both tomatoes and peppers.
LED lighting allows the group to harvest cherry tomato variety Brioso and Roma vine tomato variety Aromatica in winter, while precise control of temperature, nutrients and water enables growers to offer consistent quality even when faced with difficult growing conditions.
"As the tomatoes and peppers in modern greenhouses grow on a gutter system, the harvest time is mainly influenced by the number of light hours and the time of planting," explained Labinot Elshani.
"Temperature, nutrients and water are precisely controlled by the producers, therefore the crops are not subject to the usual fluctuations in the field and we expect good quality products this season.”
Kicking off the glasshouse-grown tomato season, Landgard marketed the first West German Sweetelle cherry tomatoes in mid-March, with the Juanita mini cherry variety also harvested before Easter.
These were followed by the vine tomato variety Lyterno, cherry tomato variety Brioso, Roma vine tomato Ardiles and Roma tomato Romanella in weeks 14 and 15.