(Nov. 15) ATLANTA — Sunrise Growers Inc. took a long look at their label and packaging, and they didn’t like what they saw.

“Our label looked old,” said Christine Reker, director of marketing and strategy.

Placentia, Calif.-based Sunrise, which represents 200 strawberry growers with more than 3,000 acres, spent more than eight months looking for a solution. The answer, a new-look label and clamshell, was unveiled Nov. 6 during the Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Summit.

“We changed the size and location of our label so it showcases the berries and focuses on freshness,” Reker said.

The label features the slogan “hand-picked fresh,” and stresses the fact that the product — which is low in fat and cholesterol — is certified by the American Heart Association.

Sunrise used eight focus groups in four cities before selecting the new clamshells, which come in 8-, 16-, 32- and 64-ounce packages. Unlike traditional clamshells, Sunrise’s packaging only has vented ridges near the bottom of the package, which makes it easier for the consumer to see the product inside. Sunrise made up for the lack of ridges by leaving gaps between the lid and the bottom of the container.

Reker said Sunrise strawberries were expected to be available in the new packaging nationwide by Jan. 1.