(May 23) Desert Glory Ltd., San Antonio, has introduced a sweet, bite-sized greenhouse tomato in Southwestern markets and plans to expand the NatureSweet-labeled product into Southern California next year.

“They might look like grape tomatoes, but they’re significantly sweeter than grape tomatoes and have better color and optimal size,” said Bryant Ambelang, vice president of sales and marketing.

Ambelang said NatureSweet cherubs weigh 10 to 12 grams each and have a minimum brix of 7 with an average of 8 or 9. That compares to 6 to 8 grams and a brix of 5 for grape tomatoes, Ambelang said.

Desert Glory, which sells directly to retailers, has specialized in cherry tomatoes on the vine. Those tomatoes have a minimum brix of 6 and average of 7 but are twice as big as cherubs, Ambelang said.

Cherubs were tested in club stores for 18 months before being rolled out in Arizona retail stores in March. They expanded into south Texas stores in early May.

Desert Glory is marketing the tiny tomatoes as a healthy snack and has started a campaign that includes television advertisements, point-of-sale materials and coupons. Cherubs are packaged in 10½-ounce bowls, with a suggested retail price of $3.99. There are 12 bowls per case.