CREDIT Magnit TAGS tomatoes greenhouse _upload_iblock_814_SR1A9152

Tomatoes being produced exclusively for Russian retailer Magnit (Photo: Magnit)

Leading players from across the fresh tomato business will share their ideas and insight at Global Tomato Congress, which combines exclusive, informative content with the best networking opportunities.

The event, which takes place online on 16 March from 10am-4pm CET, explores the latest innovations in the tomato category with a mix of talks, interviews, and discussion. This makes it the best place to find out what's happening right now in the world of fresh tomatoes.

And with more than 800 people from over 50 countries expected to attend this year’s meeting, it is also the only place to network with a large number of people all connected to the category.

'We are very happy that we can apply our excellent global event model to a product category that is showing some very exciting signs of potential expansion and growth,' says Mike Knowles of organiser Fruitnet.

Interactive, on demand

Interactive sessions include live chat and Q&A with speakers, so delegates can ask them the questions that matter most to them. They can also enjoy Global Tomato Congress sessions while networking with other attendees, and if they miss any sessions, these are all available on demand to watch later.

This year's congress will focus on important topics including consumer behaviour, sustainability, advanced breeding, automated production, artificial intelligence, marketing, and packaging.

In particular, it will focus on the future, concentrating on the modernisation of fresh tomato supply chains that serve retail, wholesale, and foodservice channels all across the world.

The line-up features several tomato category experts, including Sam Warren of UK retailer Sainsbury’s, Europanel’s consumer insight director Davide Perotto, Jörg Werner and Jan Doldersum of Rijk Zwaan, Anne Williams of Bayer Vegetable Seeds, and Pilar Checa of Syngenta.

Following Perotto’s introduction, which presents the major category developments to watch out for in 2021, Werner and Doldersum will look more closely at retail and consumer market trends in Germany.

Also featured on the programme are some of the trade’s leading commercial players: Henri Lambriex of Dutch supplier RedStar, Jo Lambrecht of Belgian company BelOrta, Raúl Medina of Spanish group Agroponiente, and Perry Dekkers of Netherlands-based Growers United.

The freshest topics

Global Tomato Congress 2021 covers the most important topics and trends, among them sustainability, technological advances, marketing strategies, and the development of new varieties.

Céline Montauriol (Azura), Martin Voorberg (BASF Vegetable Seeds), Juan Vicente Gallego (Granada La Palma), Klaus Kirsch (Bayer Crop Science), Tim Tijsma (Van Der Hoeven), and Marcin Spiewok (Silbo) will explore how the fresh tomato business can meet the sustainability challenge by reducing waste, improving packaging, and producing more efficiently.

Leading names in technology, software, and plant breeding will share their expertise with visitors, offering a glimpse of the future of the fresh tomato category.

Speakers including Shimpei Takeshita (Sanatech), Cathie Martin (John Innes Centre), Kees Könst (Enza Zaden), Joris Mulders and Max van den Hemel (Delphy), Edwin Vanlaerhoeven and Haruhiko Kato (Certhon), Sophie Stanley (WayBeyond), and Eduard Fitó (Semillas Fitó) will explain how new processes and technologies are going to change the shape of the business.

Elsewhere, Raul Medina of Grupo Agroponiente, Damien Butler of Donelly Fruit & Veg, Martin Flynn of Flynn’s Tomatoes, and Jay Scott, formerly of University of Florida IFAS, will consider the importance of taste in the development of new fresh tomato types.

Daniel Manriquez Becerra of AgroFresh, Milena Poledica of Arrigoni, and Ruud Kaagman of Syngenta will look at new ways to combat pests and diseases. Svetlana Tokunova and Nico van Vliet of Bayer Vegetable Seeds will provide some insight into the group’s new marketing approach.

And the final session of the day will look at what lies ahead in terms of major trends and game-changing developments for the fresh tomato business.

Tatiana Nazarova will report from Russia on the market’s increasing self-sufficiency, Annette Meeder and Jörg Werner of Rijk Zwaan will demonstrate new consumer eye-tracking software at their retail centre in Berlin, and Joyce Cui of Haisheng Group will reveal how the company is building a new market for premium snack tomatoes in China.

This story was updated on 24 February to reflect a change in Haisheng's nominated speaker at GTC.

For more details of how to attend Global Tomato Congress 2021, please visit