Syngenta has opened a new tomato demonstration centre, a move that the company has said could change the way tomato varieties are bred while fulfilling new market demands in the future.

The new R&D and marketing facility, Tomato Vision, opened this week in Maasland, the Netherlands, including 14,000m2 of high-tech glasshouse where 800 unique new hybrids are tested and selected for specific market needs, using both ultra-modern and traditional breeding technologies.

According to the group, the greenhouse has been designed to mimic real growing conditions, featuring different sections for lit and unlit cultivation with climate control.

An area of 1,500m2 is open to visitors to offer them insight into upcoming introductions, along with a deeper understanding of Syngenta’s whole active glasshouse portfolio.

Tomato Vision is also seen as a platform to engage and connect with customers to identify their needs.

“We want to develop varieties that truly meet growers’ and customers’ demands,' said Ruud Kaagman, global tomato crop unit head at Syngenta. 'By creating this connection between our breeders and the market, we are able to deliver fine-tuned varieties.”

As the Covid-19 pandemic has recently highlighted how digital communications can overcome physical constraints, Tomato Vision will have an online inaugural opening.

“This wonderful achievement will reach our customers and partners around the world,' Kaagman continued. 'Of course, we would like to welcome our visitors physically as soon as possible, but for now we can bring you Tomato Vision at your desk, wherever this is.'