How Do I Choose the Best Organic Tomatoes?

Kristeen Moore
Kristeen Moore
Crostini with organic tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil.
Crostini with organic tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil.

Organic vegetables continue to increase in prevalence in grocery store chains in response to higher consumer demand for this type of produce. Tomatoes are considered organic if they are grown completely without the use of pesticides and herbicides. Organic tomatoes can be found at grocery stores and supermarkets, but you can also grow your own if you live in a favorable climate. Another factor to consider is the types of tomatoes that you want, as they all vary in sizes and flavors.

Organic yellow tomatoes.
Organic yellow tomatoes.

Pesticides and herbicides are chemicals often used in the mass production of fruits and vegetables. These items are used to help to ward off insects and to ensure that the produce grows to its fullest potential. For this reason, you might find that traditionally-grown tomatoes in grocery stores are significantly larger than those that are harvested organically. Although some experts claim that there is just a trace of chemicals left on the foods, some crops, including tomatoes, are particularly vulnerable to retaining pesticides because of their skins. Organic tomatoes, on the other hand, are grown without the assistance of potentially harmful chemicals.

Organic tomatoes can often be found at farmer's markets.
Organic tomatoes can often be found at farmer's markets.

The most common places that organic tomatoes are sold include your neighborhood farmer’s market as well as grocery stores. When attending a farmer’s market, you might consider asking whether particular tomatoes are organic, because some are grown the traditional way. Organic tomatoes are easier to identify in supermarkets, as many chains dedicate whole sections in the produce department exclusively to organically-grown fruits and vegetables.

Organic grape tomatoes are ideal for use in salads.
Organic grape tomatoes are ideal for use in salads.

Purchasing tomatoes that are labeled as organic might not always guarantee you a truly chemical-free food. Some countries allow companies to label their produce as organic so long as they reach a certain percentage point. This often means that many tomatoes are not purely organic; instead, you might consider a brand that is labeled as such.

One of the best ways to choose organic tomatoes is to grow them yourself. Planting tomatoes requires seeds, organic soil, and abundant air circulation. This type of produce also needs a lot of sunshine in order to grow, so you might consider planting the seeds during times of the year in which there is an abundant amount of ultraviolet rays.

Organic tomatoes and other produce are often sold at grocery stores alongside their traditional counterparts.
Organic tomatoes and other produce are often sold at grocery stores alongside their traditional counterparts.

Aside from where you to locate organic tomatoes, you will also need to determine which types you desire. Smaller versions, such as grape and cherry tomatoes, are perfect additions to salads and can also be eaten alone as snacks. Heirloom tomatoes are some of the most common around, and they are in larger in size so that they are easier to chop up and place into different dishes.

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    • Crostini with organic tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil.
      Crostini with organic tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil.
    • Organic yellow tomatoes.
      By: martinlee
      Organic yellow tomatoes.
    • Organic tomatoes can often be found at farmer's markets.
      By: WavebreakmediaMicro
      Organic tomatoes can often be found at farmer's markets.
    • Organic grape tomatoes are ideal for use in salads.
      By: JHESTON
      Organic grape tomatoes are ideal for use in salads.
    • Organic tomatoes and other produce are often sold at grocery stores alongside their traditional counterparts.
      By: Art Allianz
      Organic tomatoes and other produce are often sold at grocery stores alongside their traditional counterparts.
    • Organic tomatoes are an easy way to boost the health quotient of a simple salad.
      By: valery121283
      Organic tomatoes are an easy way to boost the health quotient of a simple salad.