(Dec. 23) DELRAY BEACH, Fla. — A leading bell pepper shipper is getting into the consumer-pack business.

Delray Beach-based Pero Packing & Sales Inc. has introduced shrink-wrap tray packs containing three, four or six peppers in any color combination of a customer’s choosing. The packs are comparable to what a repacker might sell to retailers, or what some retailers package for themselves from bulk shipments.

But Pero is doing it at the source packinghouse level as a result of customer demand, said Frank Pero, vice president.

“At our level, not too many people are doing it,” Pero said. “The advantages should be a faster turnaround time and better shelf life. And certain retailers aren’t set up to do much of this.”

“We know if we wrap fresh product, it’s going to be better than wrapping product that’s four days old.”

The three-packs will come eight trays to a single-layer master carton; four-packs will come six trays to a single-layer master carton; and six-packs will come eight trays to a two-layer master carton, Pero said.

Pero is also considering the consumer-oriented packaging for small fancy cucumbers.

“This isn’t a huge thing for us,” he said, “but it’s a project we’re going to expand on.”