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The Margin: Ronzoni is discontinuing this pasta shape and its fans are freaking out

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It’s a sad moment for many pasta lovers.

Ronzoni, the popular U.S.-based pasta brand, has announced that it will no longer be producing its pastina variety. The miniature type of pasta is much beloved as a comfort food and can be prepared in a variety of ways, such as being used in a soup or simply served with butter and Parmesan cheese.

Ronzoni is part of 8th Avenue, a private company behind a number of consumer brands. A spokesperson for 8th Avenue explained that the pastina’s “small size and star-shape require specialized production from a third-party manufacturer” and that “our long-term manufacturer informed us they would cease producing Ronzoni Pastina effective January 2023.”

The spokesperson added, “Despite exhaustive efforts, we have been unable to identify a viable, new manufacturer who could make Pastina in the same shape, size and standards that Ronzoni customers have come to expect from this comforting classic.”

While other pasta brands do offer pastina, the Ronzoni one was particularly beloved — at least judging from comments on social media as word spreads about the discontinuation of the product.

Numerous petitions on Change.org are calling upon 8th Avenue to find a way to resume production of its pastina. As one petition states, “Pastina has been a staple in households across the globe for decades, and has long been heralded as the perfect choice when you’re feeling under the weather & in need of a meal that is filling but won’t upset your stomach.” Almost 700 people have signed that petition as of Wednesday morning.

The 8th Avenue spokesperson didn’t respond to questions from MarketWatch about how many boxes of Ronzoni pastina the company sells annually. But the spokesperson did indicate there may still be hope for pastina lovers as the company continues to seek a soluation.

“We haven’t given up,” the spokesperson said.

Indeed, there have been instances of popular consumer goods that were discontinued but production resumed at a later point. Perhaps the most prominent example is the Twinkies snack cake, the production of which was suspended a decade ago to considerable public outcry. But Twinkies eventually returned.

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