top cx logo
cx logo
Explorearrow down
search icon
arrow down

French tomatoes become latest food to receive top quality label

Why growers submit to random inspections and taste tests to compete on quality not price

For the cherry tomato, quality inspectors look at how crunchy, sweet and juicy it is Pic: Antoine Brun-Hairion Rougeline

Tomatoes are the latest food to benefit from Label Rouge quality certification, allowing consumers to identify superior products.

The label will apply to four varieties: cherry tomatoes, both loose and on the vine; round tomatoes on the vine; and tomates allongées cœur.

To obtain the label, producers will have to meet a strict list of specifications and be subject to random weekly inspections.

Read more: Tips on where to find the best value fruit and vegetables in France

France can compete on taste not cost

Félix Pizon, director of the Association des Fruits et Légumes du Lot-et-Garonne (AIFLG), charged with undertaking the quality inspections, said: “For the cherry tomato, for example, we look at how crunchy, sweet and juicy it is.”

Producers cannot use artificial light to boost growth, or produce tomatoes before spring.

“We know we cannot rival countries such as Spain and Morocco with the same product, as we do not have the same production costs,” Mr Pizon said. 

“The solution is to move upmarket and offer a tomato that has more taste.”

The Label Rouge tomatoes are produced in Lot-et-Garonne, Pyrénées-Orientales, and Provence. 

The label is recognised only in France, but the AIFLG is also hoping to obtain a European IGP (Indication Géographique Protégée) label for the Marmande tomato produced mainly in Lot-et-Garonne.

Related articles

French farmer grows crops without water, fertiliser or pesticide

French nursery specialises in plants that taste of cheese or oysters

France’s most beautiful market: Small town in south-west wins contest

Resident or second-home owner in France?
Benefit from our daily digest of headlines and how-to's to help you make the most of life in France
By joining the newsletter, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy
See more popular articles
The Connexion Help Guides
featured helpguide
Healthcare in France*
Featured Help Guide
- Understand the French healthcare system, how you access it and how you are reimbursed - Useful if you are new to the French healthcare system or want a more in-depth understanding - Reader question and answer section Aimed at non-French nationals living here, the guide gives an overview of what you are (and are not) covered for. There is also information for second-home owners and regular visitors.
Get news, views and information from France