How tomatoes took over Twitter

The business of tomato farming has taken over Twitter. Here's how it happened.


June 22, 2021

Credit: Sean Gallup / Getty Images

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This is a guest post from one of Twitter’s most popular finance parody accounts: @ParikPatelCFA (you can read more of his work at Bullish Studios)

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Hey everyone, I’m Dr. Parik Patel, BA, CFA, ACCA, Esq.

For those of you who don’t know me, I’m a Chartered Fin-meme Analyst (CFA) and Twitter’s most qualified fintwit account.

Anyways, I’ve been told that I have a particular insight into the world of finance, memes and everything in between.

The team at The Hustle asked me to round up some good tweets. This week’s was a real doozy. 

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It wasn’t too long ago (e.g., last week) when lumber was Twitter’s favorite commodity to talk about. 

Well, there’s a new (much more colorful) kid on the block: tomatoes

As fate would have it, your favorite doctor had something to do with this new craze.

The story begins on June 15th, with this tweet from @profitwithant:

The clickbaity nature of this content is a staple of “side hustle Twitter”.

As a CFA, it took me 3.5 seconds to calculate that for $50/month to equal $1m, it would take 1667 years. To be fair, @profitwithant later acknowledged his mistake… but then things really started to get weird. 

Real estate entrepreneur Nick Huber — who has a Twitter handle that looks to be some kind of nickname (@sweatystartup) and is a former guest on The Hustle’s My First Million podcast — sided with @profitwithant.

And, look, I totally get the appeal of side hustles and passive income. But, I’m also a CFA (not sure I mentioned this) and also a PhD and just really good at finance. So, if you’re pitching me passive income ideas…come correct.

Huber’s take here is not correct.

We had this following exchange, where he told me I didn’t understand the concept of “scale” (who does really?):

Yes, Huber’s math is technically accurate. But — good lord — what a completely arbitrary farming commodity to pick. Clearly, I wasn’t the only person perplexed by his tweet and affinity for tomatoes. 

In Twitter-dom, there is a phrase called “getting ratioed”. It refers to the ratio of replies to retweets. Typically, when the replies outnumber the retweets, there is broad disagreement with the original tweet. 

TLDR: Huber’s tweet got ratioed (1.7k replies vs. 1.6k retweets).

Sure, enough, the jokes started coming in…

…and kept coming…

…and — why not? — here are some more:

To Huber’s credit, he leaned into the joke. He changed his Twitter name to Nick “Tomato King” Huber and tweeted about a tomato-based crypto coin he plans to launch.

So, there it is. If you see tomato jokes floating around Twitter, that’s the genesis.

Happy to have played my part in this latest round of internet tomfoolery.

Source: Twitter
Source: Twitter

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NOTE 1: We reached out to Huber for a comment and this is what he had to say: “People really don’t see opportunity even if it slaps them right in the face. With tomatoes you have two very cheap inputs – water and dirt. Put them together and you have endless scaling possibilities. But most people don’t understand scale, and it’s a shame.”

NOTE 2: Turner Novak — VC and Twitter personality extraordinaire (see above) — may have actually won this round of jokes after changing the name of his VC firm from Banana Capital to Tomato Capital. We don’t know how long the name change will last (hopefully forever), but its an A+ joke and is yet another entry in the “is a tomato a fruit or vegetable” canon.

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