Whether you like your tomato raw like a fruit, in sauces, salsas, salads, processed into ketchup or tomato soup. Or you simply like to have a Bloody Mary (usually on a flight).
Which reminds me of a question I always had "Why do we tend to choose to drink tomato juice on flights more than on any firm ground?" (I found the answer to that truly intriguing)
Anyhow, with more than 7500 tomato varieties grown around the world, there is a tomato for every person and personality.
Talking about "varieties", and the numbers 7, 5, 0, 0 did you ever wonder what the "57 Varieties" on Heinz actually mean?
According to Heinz's website, while riding a train in New York City in 1896, Henry Heinz saw a sign advertising 21 styles of shoes, which he thought was clever. Although Heinz was manufacturing more than 60 products at the time, Henry (as we like to call him over here) thought 57 was a lucky number. So, he began using the slogan "57 Varieties" in all his advertising. Today the company has more than 5,700 products around the globe, but still uses the magic number of "57".
Whereas many people know that tomatoes are packed with vitamins A and C, calcium, potassium and rich in lycopene, an antioxidant that is good for the heart and effective against certain cancers (we are told this on pretty much every Ketchup bottle). I wonder how many were aware that cooked tomatoes are actually better for you than raw ones, as more beneficial chemicals are released?
Which leads me to another point, because the tomato has seeds and grows from a flowering plant botanically it is classed as a fruit, not a vegetable. Which is great, has it not been for "The ketchup as a fruit controversy".
Early in the presidency of Ronald Reagan, there was an intention to provide more flexibility in meal planning to local school lunch administrators coping with National School Lunch Plan subsidy cuts enacted by the Omnibus Regulation Acts of 1980 and 1981. The regulations allowed administrators the opportunity to credit items not explicitly listed that met nutritional requirements. While ketchup was not mentioned in the original regulations, pickle relish was used as an example of an item that could count as a vegetable. A similar controversy arose in 2011 when Congress passed a bill prohibiting the USDA from increasing the amount of tomato paste required to constitute a vegetable; the bill allowed pizza with two tablespoons of tomato paste to qualify as a vegetable.
But, hey, don't blame President Reagan for this, it was really President Jimmy Carter, who has signed The Omnibus Reconciliation Act of 1980, reducing the Federal School Lunch and Child Nutrition Programs budget by approximately eight percent that started this "healthy Pizza" fiasco. President Reagan simply "built" on it.
So, I was thinking, is it too much to suggest that drinking coffee, tea and date coffee (preferably all three together) with a pizza and chips is the equivalent of 5 Fruits / Veg a day?
At which point I would highly recommend NOT to forget to add sugar (veg/plant? - depending on its source) and salt (hmm Mineral supplement?).
After all, everyone knows veggies are good for you.
Wait, why not try our "Date Connoisseur" - it is the equivalent of two fruits!!!! :-)