Producer: Tomato Stall, Isle of Wight
Product: Speciality Isle of Wight tomatoes
Region: London and South East
Category: From the earth, primary
What they do:
Tomatoes have been grown on the Isle of Wight for more than 30 years, but the Tomato Stall first started selling their freshly grown produce across the South and in London’s food markets in 2007. Currently the Tomato Stall commercially grows 35 varieties of the plant, although there can be up to 200 varieties undergoing testing for quality and taste at any time. They collaborate with seed houses around the world to source the best seeds that go on to produce the most interesting flavours.
The entire growing system is biodegradable and they compost all their plant waste. Natural predators are used to control pests in the greenhouses and pollination of the plants is done by bumblebees that are native to the UK. Nothing goes to waste and any surplus produce is transformed into tomato-based products such as their ‘sunshine’ tomato juice and green tomato chutney.
They participate in Open Farm Sunday to give local people and interested tourists the opportunity to see behind the scenes of the nursery. During British Tomato Week they let in school trips to reconnect children with food and educate them about the reach and success of the tomatoes.
What the judges said:
The judges admired the Tomato Stall’s drive to seek out new varieties from other countries. It was clear in their entry that they were genuinely excited about the business and channelled that enthusiasm in to educating the community and local schools.
Visit the website: Tomato Stall