Christopher Ranch introduces pre-peeled specialty onions in retail consumer packs
by Rand Green | September 08, 2010
Christopher Ranch has added three new packs of peeled specialty onions to its
product mix, according to a Sept. 2 press release issued by the Gilroy, CA-
The products are Pearl onions, Cipolline onions and shallots, and Christopher
Ranch LLC is offering the value-added pre-peeled products in ready-to-use
six-ounce retail consumer bags.
"With the success of its peeled garlic in eco-friendly bags, Christopher Ranch
knew the timing was right to expand its consumer line of products in the new
packaging," the release stated.
"The six-ounce bags are easy to use and store, and the resealable closure is a
press-and-seal type to keep the onions fresh," according to the press release.
"Each bag is 100 percent recyclable, and each is coded with a 'best before'
date (five weeks from date of peeling). These bags stand up for great retail
display but can lay flat in the consumer's refrigerator."
"We have been in the specialty produce business for a very long time" and
have long carried Pearl onions, Cipolline onions and shallots as part of the
company's product line, Patsy Ross, vice president of marketing at
Christopher Ranch, told The Produce News Sept. 8. "We have always had them
available fresh" in whole form. The company has also offered the products in
peeled form to "the foodservice end of the business."
But the products are new to the retail side, she said, noting that they fit well
with the many other "pre-prepped products" that are currently available at
grocery stores such as ready-to-use baby carrots, pre-cut salads, coleslaw
mixes, other pre-cut vegetables and also pre-cut fruit.
Consumer feedback on whole specialty onions indicates that consumers find
them to be "not easy to peel," Ms. Ross said.
With the availability of the new packaging equipment the company is using
for peeled garlic in bags, "it is easier for us to try new products," she
continued. "So we did a little bit of research with some retail customers and
brokers, and they thought there would be an interest for something like this,
so we moved forward. We are just at the very beginning stages. It is basically
at the sampling stage right now. We are giving it a try, and we will see. So far,
the interest level has been high, but it is at the very beginning."
"Pearl and Cipolline onions are tasty and not just used as ingredients but are
often served as a side dish," according to the press release. "Shallots are
generally used as a sauce onion in French cuisine."
The press release quoted Bill Christopher, managing partner of Christopher
Ranch, as saying that the company's foodservice customers "have been
enjoying freshly peeled shallots, Pearl and Cipolline onions for years, so we're
excited to be able to offer these great products to our retail customers."