(June 18) Verdelli Farms Inc., Harrisburg, Pa., has introduced four packaging cups that could make cutting onions an antiquated notion for consumers. The new onion cups, which will contain diced or petal cut onions, should be in supermarkets throughout the East Coast before the July Fourth weekend.

Verdelli Farms will offer the 10-ounce diced and 7-ounce petal cut onion cups with red or white onions. The new packaging will make using and storing onions easier. It is designed to maintain onion quality throughout the vegetable’s shelf life.

The company, which supplies fresh-cut produce to all the major retailers along the Eastern Seaboard as far south as Virginia, expects to move 15,000 pounds of the product every week, said Mike Verdelli, vice president of sales and marketing.

Verdelli said the packages are a direct response to something customers have said they needed. He said the packages will save them time and give them flexibility.

“Onions are one of the most requested vegetables by consumers to be ready to use at the time of purchase,” Verdelli said. “We’ve targeted these requests with a package designed to protect the integrity of the product.”

Jill Thompson, director of product development, said she expects the convenience to lure customers this summer. As the temperatures warm up, the uses are almost endless.

“The new onion cups will be perfect for the summer picnic season,” Thompson said.

Aside from just summer applications, Thompson said that they will also offer convenience to customers year-round. She said that there are other items under development that could be added to the product line in the future.