The Belgian cooperative has announced the sale of its first Coeur de Boeuf tomatoes of the season, with expectations high following annual growth in the production area of 28 per cent

This week, the first Belgian Coeur de Boeuf tomatoes of 2024 were sold at Belgian cooperative BelOrta, grown by producers Wim and Brecht Vertommen of Den Overkant in Sint-Katelijne-Waver. 

Wim Vertommen

Wim Vertommen shows off his Coeur de Boeuf

“With its distinctive shape, mild taste and special colour, the Coeur de Boeuf tomato is the ideal choice to welcome spring and summer to our region,” stated the cooperative, the leading supplier of the variety in Benelux.

According to BelOrta, Den Overkant’s more than 20 years’ experience growing the Mediterranean Coeur de Boeuf enables the producer to “accurately tailor the product to the desired specifications of the customers”.

“This special tomato has the property of colouring from the inside out, which means that a green Coeur de Boeuf can be perfectly ripe on the inside,” it revealed. “The combination of a red internal colour with a green exterior provides a visually attractive addition to various dishes, both hot and cold.”

In 2023, BelOrta growers supplied more than 2,000 tonnes of Coeur de Boeuf tomatoes, and the production area has increased this year by 28 per cent to over 5ha. “As a result, a significant increase in the harvest of Coeur de Boeuf tomatoes is expected compared to last year,” BelOrta said. “BelOrta offers these tomatoes in various packages, ranging from 3-6kg, but smaller packages are also available. The Coeur de Boeuf tomatoes are at their best from March to November.”

Last week saw the sale of the first green peppers of the season at BelOrta. “In 2023, BelOrta sold a total of 21,000 tonnes of block peppers – green, yellow and red,” the cooperative revealed. “This year promises a similar, if not larger, harvest with a season that runs from early March for green peppers, mid-March for the coloured varieties, and continues until the end of October. With a total of 72ha of block peppers, pepper lovers can again enjoy locally grown peppers this year without any worries.”

The snack tomato season has equally begun in Belgium. With 8ha of production and sales of nearly 2,000 tonnes in 2023, BelOrta said it was determined to supply delicious snack tomatoes. “The season runs from week 13 to week 46,” the cooperative said, “and BelOrta has chosen to use virus-resistant varieties, ensuring both growers and consumers a reliable and tasty experience.”