31 Aug 2020
A thumb-sized cucumber, the one-bite snack
In 2017 Rijk Zwaan introduced the first one-bite cucumber snack variety Quatrino RZ. Time to look back, and forward, with Rijk Zwaan and Mucci Farms, one of the first companies to adopt this little thumb size cucumber.
The cutest cucumber
“We began growing the one-bite variety, which we market as CuteCumber Poppers™, in 2018, with a small trial planting and quickly grew the program.” – Guy Totaro, Cucumber Grower Manager at Mucci Farms says. “Plant wise, it’s easy to grow with no issues and it’s similar to other crops in terms of maintenance. The flavour and texture are excellent and it’s consistent with our current snack variety. The only challenge being the labour intensity due to the size of the product.” When asked what Rijk Zwaan can do to improve new one-bite varieties, Guy is clear and concise: “Normally, I would have a response but not for this item. I simply haven’t tasted or grown a better snack variety than Rijk Zwaan’s”
Danny Mucci, President of Sales & Marketing at Mucci Farms, continues, “We have enjoyed a great relationship with Rijk Zwaan over the years and they were fantastic to work with as we trialled and launched this amazing award-winning product. The appeal of this product is extensive and it’s available at several major retailers in Canada and the United States. Not only is it a healthy snack, it’s also great for appetizers at family get-togethers or parties. We took a kid-centric approach, which has done exceptionally well, but parents and other adults can’t resist the snacking convenience either. We look forward to our continued partnership and success with one-bite, or what we like to call, CuteCumber Poppers™!”
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Where it all began
Curious to know more about this product’s background, we asked Gert-Jan Krook, Snack- and Mini-Cucumber Crop-coordinator, where it originated. He replied, “The one-bite was specially bred as an easy-to-grab snack.” Rene Aarts, breeder at Rijk Zwaan adds, “I’m also responsible for mini cucumbers and wanted to create something new. In combination with promoting a more healthy way of life and snacking, we came up with the idea of making a cucumber so small that anybody can grab one and eat it on the go as you don't need to cut it. So, consumers can easily enjoy cucumbers as an in-between-meals snack any time of day.” Gert-Jan Krook continues, “At the moment North America is the biggest market for our high-tech variety, Quatrino RZ. China is picking up on the healthy snacking trend and launching one-bite. South Africa and some European Countries are also introducing this cute product.”