Dec 18, 2017
Tearless sweet onion grown in Washington, Nevada, to hit shelves

A new American onion is due out on shelves in select markets this winter.

Nevada- and Washington state-grown Sunions are being marketed as “America’s first tearless and sweet onion.”

Sunions were developed through an all-natural cross-breeding program over the course of three decades, according to Sunions.

“This onion is the product of more than 30 years of research and development to grow an onion that actually decreased in pungency during storage,” said Sunions breeder Rick Watson.

Sunion photos courtesy of bigInk PR.

“How can you cut an onion without crying?” is the most commonly asked question of the National Onion Association.

Unlike traditional onions, Sunions become sweeter every day, according to the company. Volatile compounds in onions are responsible for tearing and pungent flavor and the amounts of those compounds in other onions remain the same or increase over time. In Sunions, these compounds do the exact opposite and decrease to create a tearless, sweet and mild onion.

Sunions are currently grown only in Nevada and Washington. Sunions are harvested in late summer/early fall and are made available once they are tested and certified tearless and sweet according to a strict set of standards. Availability this year begins in mid-December and will continue until March or April, depending on supply.

“We’re dedicated to providing the best onion experience, which is why we’ve established such strict rules with Sunions growers,” said Lyndon Johnson, crop manager for onions at Bayer Vegetable Seeds. “We want to differentiate Sunions from all other onions and be sure we maintain our brand promise to deliver an onion that is truly tearless and sweet.”

Sunions were put to the test last year at trials where they were chopped and compared to a leading onion variety by consumers pre-disposed to tearing when cutting onions. Sunions were preferred five to one and rated significantly less irritating to the eyes compared to the other onion, the company reports.

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