January 18, 2022 6.00 am

Lincolnshire farmer launches game-changer onions… that don’t make you cry

No tears, but still as tasty

An innovative crossbred onion that doesn’t make the cook cry is launching in the UK today – and a Lincolnshire farmer is behind the tear-free product.

Robert Oldershaw​, director at Moulton Bulb Co in Spalding, has been working with a plant breeder in the USA to bring ‘Sunions’ to cooks in this country.

He said: “We were approached by [plant breeder] BASF a couple of years ago following our interest in the product when it was launched in the US.

“We have been working with them ever since get them ready for launch in the UK. As well as growing onions on our own farms in Lincolnshire and Norfolk, we also work closely with growers in the UK and abroad, and have developed a relationship with the Spanish grower who are growing these special onions. We organise the shipments and pack the product ready for sale in Waitrose.

“The variety has been developed over a number of years using natural plant breeding methods. The particular attributes of tearlessness have been selected and bred on to get to where we are today.

“The onions are less pungent than a standard British onions, making them ideal to eat raw in salads. They’re also great for anyone who is particularly sensitive to crying when chopping onions or encouraging children to get cooking and preparing food.”

The onions took more than three decades to be developed, with a huge search for onion strains with less pungency, since that is related to the tearing.

Sunions are the first tearless and sweet onion variety in the UK and will be available for shoppers to buy at Waitrose.

Paul Bidwell, onion Buyer at Waitrose, said: “We understand how a-peeling tearless onions are to our customers which is why we’re delighted to launch Sunions.”