Whatever happened to the famous Jersey tomato? Bred by Rutgers University and Campbell Soup Co. in the 1930s, it was a staple of every backyard garden. Intensely flavorful, it became synonymous with the Garden State… The imposters "look a lot better – but probably taste much worse," said Tom Orton of Rutgers’ Department of Plant Biology and Pathology. "The visual appeal has gone up, but the culinary appeal has gone down."… Through a twist a fate, Rutgers has recently been able to recreate the famous, original tomato, and will let people vote on which of final three variations of it should now wear the Jersey tomato crown… The original Rutgers tomato was a cross between a regular heirloom tomato popular at the turn of the century, and the "JTD" variety, named for John T. Dorrance, the chemist who invented condensed soup. And Campbell’s still had seed stock from those both two original "parents" of the 1934 tomato… Since 2010, Rutgers researchers have selected the best tomatoes from each subsequent generation for continued propogation. Some make the cut because of taste, others for insect-resistance, durability, visual appeal, or high yield.
/ / The Great Rutgers Tomato Contest: Which One Should Wear the Crown?