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Oso Sweet Peruvian onion volume gets significant boost

Oso Sweet Onions, headquartered in Charleston, WV, will once again market top-quality Peruvian sweet onions to is clients this season. “We’re off to a great start,” President Brian Kastick told The Produce News on Aug. 12. “We’re very excited about everything.

Oso Sweet increased its plantings this season to respond to continued consumer demand. “Our programs in the United States and Europe will be significantly larger,” Mr. Kastick stated.

The company made the decision to become a year-round marketer of sweet onions three years ago. In addition to Peru, product is sourced from Chile, Texas, California and New Mexico.

The first shipments of Peruvian onions have already entered the United States at the Port of Savannah, GA. “Now we have onions available at all ports,” he stated of arrivals in Philadelphia and Los Angeles.

Regarding weather conditions during the production season, Mr. Kastick said, “Spring was a little cooler, and there was a little heavier dew.” He added that there has been no hindrance to production of a quality crop.

Size profiles look good. “Our program is heavy to jumbos, but we have all sizes,” he stated. Onions are packed in Peru and the United States. The company’s operations in Peru are GAP certified for growing and packing. All packinglines in the United States are Primus certified.

Ninety-five percent of overall volume is marketed to retail customers under the “Oso Sweet” label, but Mr. Kastick is happy to supply the foodservice sector. “I sell to anyone who’d like to buy Oso Sweet onions,” he said.

This season, Oso Sweet is offering full-wrap high-graphic 2-, 3- and 5-pound vertical bags. “Our cartons have been redesigned,” Mr. Kastick continued. “They’re perfect for indoor displays. It’s a sharp-looking carton.”

Mr. Kastick said that internal changes at the company will facilitate onion movement. Mark Breimeister was promoted to the position of national sales director, and Jeff Sutton has been hired as sales director for the western United States, Canada and Pacific.