The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: What the Future Could Hold for Bs2 Tomatoes

plants inoculated with bacterial spot pathogen in spring 2012 trial Bs2 tomatoes are transgenic tomatoes that have been engineered to contain the Bs2 gene from pepper. As such, they are considered a genetically modified (GM) food, or a genetically modified organism (GMO). Numerous trials conducted by University of Florida researchers have shown the benefits of these cultivars for bacterial spot disease management, and growers and industry members recognize the potential for Bs2 tomatoes to make Florida tomato production more sustainable. This 4-page fact sheet discusses the benefits that might be realized by the adoption of Bs2 tomato varieties, and the challenges standing in the way of their commercial production. Written by S. F. Hutton, J. W. Scott, J. B. Jones, R. E. Stall, G. E. Vallad, B. J. Staskawicz, and D. M. Horvath , and published by the UF Department of Horticultural Sciences, April 2015.

Compact Growth Habit Tomatoes

Figure 1.  Compact growth habit tomatoes (four center beds) growing in Immokalee, FL.Alternatives to the traditional production system that reduce production cost would be economically beneficial to the Florida tomato industry. Compact growth habit tomatoes are determinate varieties with a unique architecture that may provide the basis for a viable alternative production system for Florida. These tomatoes have low growth and spreading characteristics, forming compact plants that hold fruit above the ground on short branches. They do not require staking, tying, or pruning, so they may be used by the Florida mature-green fresh-market tomato growers to reduce labor costs. This 5-page fact sheet was written by Monica Ozores-Hampton, Aline Coelho Frasca, John Scott, and Samuel Hutton, and published by the UF Department of Horticultural Sciences, September 2014.