|Authors: ||E. Balacheva, T. Kartzeva, B. Atanassova, N. Tomlekova|
|Keywords: ||anthocyanin, beta carotene, lycopene |
When mentioning the word “tomato” the majority of people usually imagine red colored fruits.
As a matter of fact, due to a number of mutant genes, tomato displays diversity in fruit colors ranging from purple, deep red, pink through orange to bright yellow and could offer health benefits related to these colors.
However, in some countries, the acceptance of tomato fruits possessing color different than red is slow, because of a kind of consumers conservatism.
The present study was, therefore, designed to examine the nutritive potential of two groups of tomato genotypes: 1. red and pink tomato cultivars for fresh consumption, preferred and largely consumed in Bulgaria, and 2. lines and hybrids characterized by pigmentation of the fruits different than red and pink.
Biochemical analyses could detect no significant differences in total vitamin C, acids and dry matter between the genotypes from the two groups.
Lycopene content of the fruits from the first group varied between 3.7 and 5.9 mg %, (the lowest one being determined in variety possessing pink fruits), and β carotene content between 0.29 and 1.45 mg %. β carotene content of the genotypes possessing orange fruits (group 2) was significantly higher than that detected in the genotypes from the first group which laid between 2.63 and 5.68 mg %. The maximum anthocyanin content in the fruits of genotypes carrying gene Aft (Anthocyanin fruit) was 95 mg %. The analysis of the results obtained showed that if consumption is limited to tomato from the first group only, consumers could not fully benefit from the richness of dietary contribution to human health offered by tomato.
Hence, some consumers’ education concerning the benefits of consuming tomato fruits displaying diverse colors may be necessary.
On the other hand, breeders could contribute to this topic by developing larger number of varieties displaying colors different than red.
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