26 May 2023
Salatrio: Rijk Zwaan demo reveals these five insights
The Salatrio concept – a single, colourful head of ‘living lettuce’ made up of three different types – has been around for years and continues to gain popularity worldwide. At the Salatrio Client Demo in early May 2023, Rijk Zwaan showcased 40 innovative combinations of leafies: more robust, more productive and easier to work with, offering more crunch, more crispiness and more convenience. “Growers are very excited to test these for themselves,” says Crop Coordinator Peter Sonneveld. Read on for the five key insights from the demo.
1. Salatrio is conquering the world
From northwest Europe, Scandinavia and North and South America, to China and Japan… growers from around the world were taken on a tour of the Salatrio Client Demo in Dinteloord, the Netherlands – either in person in the case of regional visitors, or online in the case of overseas customers. Peter Sonneveld: “This shows that the concept is gaining ground internationally. It is aligned with the wants and needs of both growers and consumers. Salatrio is fresh, colourful and easy to work with, plus it has a long shelf life.”
2. Red newcomers make classic Salatrio mix even more robust
The classic mix is a lollo rossa, a lollo bionda and an oak leaf lettuce. Sonneveld: “This year, we showcased some more robust alternatives to the lollo rossa. First, the deep red Crystal variety, Sungari RZ. It’s an open iceberg lettuce, with crisp and tasty leaves. Another option is Audex RZ, a new tasty red Salanova® lettuce which has deeply incised leaves and a longer shelf life. These varieties barely change the appearance of the classic mix, but growers and consumers will notice the difference in practice. We’re seeing interest in this upgrade from Northwest Europe, where Salatrio is already a firm fixture on supermarket shelves.”
3. A Salanova-only mix maximises convenience
It is even possible to create a Salatrio mix out of three Salanova types, according to Sonneveld. This looks slightly different from the classic variant, but it offers maximum convenience – which has been an important driver for consumers for years. “Salanova is a ‘one-cut, ready’ solution resulting in countless equally sized lettuce leaves. A mix featuring the dark green crispy Extol RZ, the light green crispy Exwatch RZ and the red Audex RZ makes things easier for growers and consumers alike.”
4. Salatrio mixes featuring butterhead lettuce or cos lettuce offer new market opportunities
A Salatrio mix with butterhead lettuce or cos lettuce is even more innovative and can help customers to set themselves apart in the market. “It really stands out visually. A combination featuring butterhead lettuce always performs well in Rijk Zwaan’s consumer research,” Sonneveld says. A mix of differently coloured cos lettuce types also attracted attention during the demo. “Growers from Asia and North and South America are enthusiastic about novelties like this. And they have more flexibility to choose such mixes because Salatrio is still a relatively new concept for them.”
5. A tailor-made approach leads to the ideal Salatrio mix
Salatrio is usually produced hydroponically in high-tech greenhouses. However, each grower’s technical situation varies, e.g. with or without LED lighting, and with fixed or mobile gutters. Moreover, low-tech or mid-tech cultivation of Salatrio is possible too. Sonneveld: “That’s why it’s so important for Rijk Zwaan to work closely with the grower. What is the technical set-up? What does the market demand? Together, we arrive at a tailor-made mix.”
Visit Rijk Zwaan during GreenTech
Did you miss the Salatrio Client Event? During the period around GreenTech (13-15 June in Amsterdam), Rijk Zwaan will be holding a Hydro Demo to showcase new lettuce varieties including a selection of Salatrio mixes. Arrange an appointment to visit by contacting your local Rijk Zwaan contact person or read more about Rijk Zwaan’s Hydro Demo in Dinteloord!