Solenero tomato has a black skin, rich in anthocyanins, and a red pulp, rich in lycopene. The purpose is to combine in a single fruit the nutraceutical and beneficial properties of tomato and black fruits, such as blueberry and red grapes.  ​

Additionally, thanks to the dark pigmentation in the stem and leaves, Solenero tomato is particularly resistant to the main fungal diseases.

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Solenero tomato is included among products with nutraceutical characteristics. Tomatoes have a substantial amount of essential nutrients and active phytochemicals, which perform a prevention / improvement function of various degenerative diseases. In addition, its quantity of anthocyanins provides further nutraceutical properties. Recent analyses estimate the global nutraceutical market worthing 380 billion dollars, and it is constantly expanding. The increase in healthcare costs, combined with the ageing of the population, are some of the factors contributing to the global increase of functional foods.


Anthocyanins are known for their antioxidant properties, capable to protect our body from free radicals. They have numerous healthy effects when taken regularly as part of the diet. They are typically found in blood oranges, blueberries, black grapes, and “black-skinned” fruits. Black-skinned fruit may not find daily use in the diet to allow a significant intake of anthocyanins.

On the other side, tomato varieties are used as part of the Mediterranean diet, both as vegetable and as derivatives, and are used daily throughout the world. Unfortunately, the common tomato does not have a significant amount of anthocyanins.

Current Technology Limitations

Anthocyanin deficiency can be alleviated by taking supplements or by a diet rich in anthocyanins. A healthy diet is preferable to supplements, which have economic and health limits.

The lack of anthocyanins in commonly used food, such as in the Mediterranean diet or in other diet, led to combine in a single fruit the beneficial properties from tomato (maintaining its typical flavour) and the presence of anthocyanins in the skin. The result is a new tomato variety capable of increasing the intake of anthocyanins. The “black Tomato” is a deposited patent including two plant varieties: «cherry», priority number 2017/1364, and another one of larger size, priority number 2015/0315. It also has an associated deposited trademark «Sunblack».

Killer Application

  • The main applications of Solenero tomato are:​
    • Food: fruit and vegetables​
    • Midi and cherry varieties​
    • Nutraceutical market​
    • Gardening (hobby market)​
    • Suitable for fresh and processed use​

Our Technology and Solutions

Solenero tomato has black skin, rich in anthocyanins, and red pulp, rich in lycopene. The nutraceutical and beneficial properties of tomato and black-skinned fruits are combined within a single fruit. This combination maintains the characteristic tomato flavor. The skin is thin and crunchy, while the inner part has lodges containing seeds. The total anthocyanins content in the whole ripe fruit is 7.1 mg/100 g fresh weight (Blando et al., 2019) and the nutraceutical properties are unaltered after cooking. ​

Solenero originated from research, which does not rely on genetic engineering technologies (GMOs), but its seeds were obtained through conventional breeding. In particular, Solenero is the result of the hybridization between the “Anthocyanin Fruit” tomato with purple fruits, and the called atroviolacea, which is rich in anthocyanins. The plant is particularly resistant to physiopathies, especially fungal diseases, thanks to the dark pigmentation in the stem and leaves.​


The Solenero tomato integrates the nutraceutical properties tipically of tomato (lycopene) and black fruits (anthocyanins). These properties are unaltered after cooking, increasing the potential use of this food. Resistance to fungal diseases is higher than other tomato varieties. This implies a reduction in both harvesting loss and use of antifungals. Finally, the Solenero tomato shows an increased life after harvesting.


Researchers are investigating new vegetable varieties with the aim to increase the anthocyanins amount compared to food products available on the market. Collaborations with industrial partners are evaluating the opportunity to use black tomato for processed products, and also to exploit new potential application sectors.

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