BASF’s vegetable seeds business developed a tearless onion variety which has now been launched at supermarkets in France, Germany, Italy, and United Kingdom. The yellow onion variety constitutes a breakthrough in vegetable innovation and is a real gamechanger as the first tearless onion available to the market. It is a result of more than three decades of conventional breeding efforts. Its benefit: while onions usually become more pungent while being stored, this variety becomes milder and sweeter over time.
Pilot sales of Sunions® started in Italy in December 2021 and in the UK and France in January 2022. In and Germany, it will hit supermarket shelves from February. It was already launched in the U.S. and Canada in 2017 and in Spain in 2020. The fresh onions will be marketed by trading partners under the brand name Sunions®.
“The tearless onion is a clear example of our ambition to make healthy eating enjoyable”, says Bilgehan Suer, Regional Crop Lead at Vegetable Seeds and project leader for Sunions Europe. “Different consumer studies confirmed that consumers love to eat Sunions® raw as much as baked, stir-fried and cooked”.
Grown from a seed variety from the Nunhems® portfolio, Sunions® have been introduced to the market in collaboration with value chain partners, with BASF providing the seeds, growing recommendations, quality assurance and connecting the chain partners from ‘farm to fork’. The use of the brand name is part of the cooperation agreement.
In this pilot phase, Sunions® (sunions.fr | sunions.co.uk | sunions.it | sunions.es) are only delivered to a reduced number of stores inside a limited number of supermarket chains in France, Germany, Italy and United Kingdom.
“If the pilot projects reveal success with consumers, distribution will be extended next season”, says Suer. “What countries will be considered next depends on local interest from consumers and the available supply options.”
About BASF’s Agricultural Solutions division
With a rapidly growing population, the world is increasingly dependent on our ability to develop and maintain sustainable agriculture and healthy environments. Working with farmers, agricultural professionals, pest management experts and others, it is our role to help make this possible. That’s why we invest in a strong R&D pipeline and broad portfolio, including seeds and traits, chemical and biological crop protection, soil management, plant health, pest control and digital farming. With expert teams in the lab, field, office and in production, we connect innovative thinking and down-to-earth action to create real world ideas that work for farmers, society and the planet. In 2020, our division generated sales of €7.7 billion.
At BASF (basf.com), we create chemistry for a sustainable future. We combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. More than 110,000 employees in the BASF Group contribute to the success of our customers in nearly all sectors and almost every country in the world. Our portfolio is organized into six segments: Chemicals, Materials, Industrial Solutions, Surface Technologies, Nutrition & Care and Agricultural Solutions. BASF generated sales of €59 billion in 2020.