Vidalia onions are receiving international attention from some large media outlets.

In a June 29 report, ABC World News Tonight shined the spotlight on the Vidalia industry pairing with Shrek, the animated character appearing in the “Shrek: Forever After” movie.

The day before, the Wall Street Journal wrote about the campaign in a front-page story.

In March, CNN’s website  reported on the campaign, as did Entertainment Weekly’s website.

The multi-media campaign features high-graphic bags and bins, along with produce department displays featuring Shrek imagery.

ABC News interviewed Wendy Brannen, the Vidalia, Ga.-based committee’s executive director, in a packing shed running the Shrek-themed cartons.

Brannen said the industry wanted to find a way to make onions appealing to children, because onions don’t catch their attention as much as apples, strawberries and bananas.

“In this past week where we saw some consumer groups lashing out at McDonalds for using toys to market to kids and some negative press surrounding that particular corporation, we have been very fortunate to get all this positive press about our tie-in with Shrek in promoting what is a healthy vegetable,” Brannen said.  “You can get a lot of media but cannot always guarantee it will be positive. When is the last time an onion made CNN unless it was tied to food safety or labor issues?”

The committee is also sponsoring a retail display contest.

The Wall Street Journal article quotes Brian Stanley, sales manager of Stanley Farms, Vidalia, who said shippers have sold more onions in mid-June than they have ever sold at the same point in the past.

Brannen said the industry has received strong consumer reaction and retailer support.

Though many stores are still running promotions, Brannen said Shrek-themed packaging material and bins have been running scarce this late in the season.

Vidalia's Shrek campaign nabs national exposure

File photo

 A June 29 Wall Street Journal article about the Vidalia Onion Committee’s “Ogres & Onions” campaign featured this Vidalia onion display at the Greenfield, Ind., location of the Indianapolis-based Marsh Supermarkets Inc.