( Courtesy Crunch Pak )

Crunch Pak, which pioneered apple slices 20 years ago, is offering sliced pears to retailers under the Opera label.

The fresh-cut pears will be available nationwide to retailers in seven-ounce packages, with the package according to a news release.

The Cashmere, Wash.-based Crunch Pak introduced the pear slices to the industry at the United Fresh Produce Association’s annual expo this spring, earning the organization’s Innovation Award in the best fruit category.

Crunch Pak first pursued the goal of a fresh-cut pear product when it started in 2000, but the technology wasn’t available to maintain quality and consistency that consumers wanted, according to the release.

The company continued research and development efforts on pears, according to Megan Wade, product development and marketing manager.

“This was a team effort to develop and perfect the proprietary technology that allows us to slice pears and still keep the integrity of the product,” Wade said in the release.

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