Friday, August 03, 2012
Fenton Friday: A TRUE Purple Tomato
The foliage on the plant is also interesting as it started out as a seedling growing almost charcoal black, now it has greened up a bit. The 'Indigo Rose' is slightly larger than a cherry tomato and is oval-ish in shape. I have not tasted one yet, but will this week after giving it a few more days to ripen fully on the vine.
It is new to the home grower market. The 'Indigo Rose' was developed by Jim Myers at Oregon State University. Don't worry folks, it is not some GMO monstrosity, this tomato was bred traditionally with wild varieties from Chile and the Galapagos Islands.
The breeders were seeking to create a tomato with high levels of antioxidants and this is the first one to have anthocyanins in its fruit. (Other tomatoes have it in their foliage, which is inedible.) According to the OSU web site, "Anthocyanins are in the class of flavonoids – compounds found in fruits, vegetables and beverages – that have aroused interest because of their potential health benefits. They have many varied effects on human health, but while they are powerful antioxidants in the test tube, we don’t really know whether they have an antioxidant effect in the human body."
So time will tell, whether this tomato breeding break-through is a true boon to human health. Meanwhile, it sure is pretty!