FAQ: "Could you please let us know about the Tomato Paste Score by ColorFlex EZ Tomato According to USDA grading of tomato paste, score 45-50 is grade A. If the score is over 50, how should you interpret the score? Is it A+?
One of our customer uses CFEZ Tomato as it meets USDA standard. Now they got score over 50 and would like your comments."
It is possible to get Tomato Scores > 50 but typically it is in the low 50+ such as 51 - 53. It would be unusual to get > 55.
Instrumental measurement of Tomato Scores, such as TPS (Tomato Paste Score), quantifies the degree of visual redness in the product where "redder is better" quality in processed tomato products (paste/puree, sauce, catsup and juice).
Increased redness suggests a higher lycopene content in the sample. Lycopene is a major carotenoid pigment and phytochemical found in tomatoes and processed tomato products.
I am not sure you could go so far as to rate the USDA grade of this tomato paste as "A+" as the USDA Grades only go up to "A". However, a TPS tomato paste score above 50 suggests that the tomato paste sample has a high lycopene content and is of good color quality.
Visually, your customer should be able to look at the tomato paste product and note that it is a good, rich red color. Also, they should be able to measure their tomato tile that comes with the CFEZ Tomato meter and get the assigned Hunter L, a, b C/2 values for the Tomato Tile read as a sample. This assures that the instrument is working well.
Tomato paste made from typical ripe California field tomatoes will typically be above a 45 (USDA Grade A/B color rating) but under 50. However, ripe tomatoes grown in Arizona where they have more heat and sunshine can result in tomato paste scores just over 50.
Sometimes 50+ tomato product is blended with barely 45 tomato product to improve the overall color quality and lycopene content.