Are Vine Ripened Tomatoes Really Better?

Two clusters of small red, yellow, and green tomatoes on the vine

We’ve all seen “vine-ripened” tomatoes at the grocery store, often at a higher price than other tomatoes. Are vine-ripened tomatoes better, or is this simply a marketing ploy? What about home gardeners? Should they wait to pick tomatoes at the peak of ripeness? The Science Behind Tomato Ripening Most experienced gardeners can recognize when a tomato is about to ripen. As the fruit reaches its mature size, it changes from a vine-green color to a paler yellow or whitish green hue. This telltale sign is followed by blushes of pink or orange appearing on the blossom end of the fruit. In commercial tomato production, there is a name for tomatoes which begin to show their mature color. They are called breakers or said to be in the breaker stage. Tomatoes at this stage are considered to be fully mature. What many consumers don’t know is that tomatoes picked at the […]

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