TYPES, VARIETIES & CUTS
Tomatoes can be classified several ways but usually fall into one of two types: determinate and indeterminate. Determinate varieties grow to a certain height and produce fruit for one cycle. Indeterminate varieties require staking/caging and grow throughout the season. Commercially, determinate varieties are more widely grown than indeterminate; the latter varieties are typically grown in home gardens.
Hundreds of varieties exist as either an heirloom or a hybrid. Heirloom seeds can be saved for the next season and are often used for generations. Hybrid tomatoes are a combination of two varieties and because the seeds may produce something different from the parent fruit, the seeds are not usually saved.
Tomatoes also have several different shapes: globe, cherry, beefsteak, and plum/pear/grape. The most common tomato at grocery stores is the globe—smooth, round, and medium in size. Cherry tomatoes, also smooth and round, are small ranging in size, measuring one or two inches in diameter. Beefsteak tomatoes are large, wide, and somewhat flat-looking. Plum, pear, and grape tomatoes have smooth skin and are shaped as their names imply.
The USDA categorizes tomatoes as either greenhouse, fresh, cherry, or on-the-vine.
Sources: USDA, Washington State University / https://apps.bluebookservices.com
|US GRADE STANDARDS||DAYS SINCE SHIPMENT||% OF DEFECTS ALLOWED||OPTIMUM TRANSIT TEMP (oF)||CHILLING INJURY|
|15 - 10 - 5||
20 - 15 - 8
19 - 14 - 8
18 - 13 - 7
17 - 11 - 6
15 - 10 - 5