SuprimAir tomatoes for Asian market

HortiDaily, 14-07-2015

Pascal Delahaye, the owner of Le Jardin de Rabelais, delivers tomatoes from his SuprimAir greenhouse for the best restaurants in Asia. Delahye and is cousin and partner Mathieu Serrault are Certon customers since many years. They have built a SuprimAir greenhouse in 2012 together with Certhon, and in 2014 they have installed their second greenhouse with LED interlighting.
These innovative growers have given an interview to Hortidaily about their unique market strategy and their collaboration with Koppert Biological.
Le jardin de Rabelais: LED, Interplanting and organic crop protection

'Goûtez la différence', or 'Taste the difference' is on the poster in the head office of Le jardin de Rabelais. Thanks to the taste of the exclusive cherry tomatoes of founder / owner Pascal Dalahaye and maximum organic crop protection, their market position is and will remain strong. Twenty-five years ago, Pascal Delahaye started growing beef tomatoes. In 1996, he changed to vine and cherry tomatoes. In 2001, growing under lights was introduced and year-round supply was made possible. The innovations continued: in 2012, Le jardin de Rabelais built a second glasshouse near the main site in the French Avoine, the semi-closed SuprimAir. And since 2014, Pascal Delahaye has used LED lights and all the 9 hectares of the business have growing lights. The vine tomatoes now make up about 15 percent of the sales volume. The rest consists of Piccolo, a cherry tomato from the French hybridizer Gautier, better known in the Netherlands as the Honey tomato.

Top restaurants in Azia

Pascal Delahaye is one of the thirteen businesses who grow this variety. He mainly supplies this exclusive cherry tomato to grocery stores in France and the surrounding countries such as Belgium, England, Germany and Spain. An interesting fact: via a trader, he also supplies his quality product to top restaurants in Hong Kong and Singapore.

A key success factor
How has his product achieved such a strong position? The fantastic taste of Piccolo is naturally an important factor, as is the exclusivity. But the organic crop protection also plays an important role. Le jardin de Rabelais has worked closely with Koppert France since the beginning. The goals have not changed and have only come closer: for as far as possible, not to use any crop protection chemicals and keep the residue level at zero. "The integrated crop protection is a key success factor in our business," according to Pascal Delahaye. "A lot depends on it. We plant new crops in the winter and thereafter work with interplanting for three years. An infestation that strikes just after planting can also give three years of problems. Therefore, we need to use everything that organic crop protection has to offer."
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