Over the last few years I have begun developing new varieties of fruits and vegetables to meet market demand. We want the very best field-grown produce as early in the summer as possible and the plants need to bear through a long season. That means they need to withstand wide swings in temperature, not succumb to pests or disease, and have exceptional flavor and nutritional qualities.
In contrast, most commercial development of food crops is focused on reliable production, mechanical harvesting, and the ability to ship long distances. Appearance is more important than flavor and nutrition and F1 hybrids are used because they will produce a standard crop under a variety if conditions.
By crossing available heirloom types and using closely related wild species, we have been able to produce vigorous new varieties with unsurpassed flavor, which also happen to be quite beautiful.