In recent years, the cooperative has specialized in the production of plum tomatoes for preserving such as the San Marzano variety, carving out an interesting niche production in the Italian market. The San Marzano tomato is the ideal product for making fresh sauces and preserving to be enjoyed throughout the year. Meticulous selection during harvest brings only the best quality fragrant and juicy tomatoes to consumers’ homes at the correct stage of ripeness.
The harvesting of preserving tomatoes extends from the middle of July to the first week in September with a peak during the first fortnight of August, the time of year with the greatest demand for this fruit.
At the moment, the production of plum preserving tomatoes is confined to small areas of land belonging to Società Agricola C.O.P.A. producer members. The harvest is entirely manual and carried out at first light by the producer families and only concerns the products at the correct stage of ripeness, which are gently taken from the plant and placed in wooden crates that are brought to the cooperative for storage and dispatching in the shortest possible time so as to maintain their quality.
The area currently planted with tomatoes is around 20 hectares. As it is still a niche production for the cooperative, the average product yields are limited to 50–70 tons per hectare. Yearly production stands at just over 1,200 tons.
In the first two weeks of August, the period of greatest yield of the plants, the cooperative markets over 40 tons of product per day.
The tomatoes are packed by Società Agricola C.O.P.A. in 8 or 10kg boxes in either wood or plastic, which are palletized and prepared for dispatch directly at the cooperative. In this way, San Marzano plum tomatoes for preserving reach our customers having maintained their excellent quality and flavour.