China opens to Washington State apples

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  • Promoting ecolabel wines

Promoting ecolabel wines

  • May 1st, 2010
A program that began by certifying vineyards in Oregon’s Willamette Valley that were following practices to protect and restore salmon watersheds has grown to include more than half the wine grape acreage of Walla Walla Valley in Washington and Oregon and several vineyards in eastern Washington.

Sustainability: imposition or opportunity?

  • May 1st, 2010
With major food companies joining the green movement, a growing number of farmers are being asked questions about their sustainability efforts and/or programs. Growers can either view the movement as opportunity or imposition, says Dr. Cliff Ohmart.

New organic organization

  • May 1st, 2010

Minnesota grower Harry Hoch helped found a new organization called the Organic Tree Fruit Growers Association, and his wife, Jackie, is the first president.

The organization started as an informal network of a few upper Midwest growers who wanted to help each other meet the challenges of growing organic fruit [...]

Good to Go

  • May 1st, 2010

Italy orchard tour
Susan Pheasant and Mauricio Frías are offering an intensive technical tour of South Tyrol orchards in November to learn about high-density orchard systems, production practices, and specialized machinery for tree fruit. The tour will begin in Venice and include key visits in Bolzano, Ferrara, and Bologna. [...]

  • Last Bite–From doctor to farmer

Last Bite–From doctor to farmer

  • May 1st, 2010

The altimeter on John Kloeber’s label at right shows an altitude of 1,500 feet, a suggestion that fruit grown in orchards at high altitudes is of high quality. Upper right: The Green River Hot Springs and Sanitarium Hotel pictured in 1908.

Yakima Valley apple and pear rancher Dr. John S. [...]

Eye on the Middle East

  • April 15th, 2010

Dubai, one of the United Arab Emirates, is the major fruit import port in the Persian Gulf with its trade tentacles reaching to Yemen in the south, Iraq in the north, and Sudan in the west. It’s difficult to separate out ­specific countries as independent and uninfluenced by the [...]

  • Last Bite – Pioneer of exports to Europe

Last Bite – Pioneer of exports to Europe

  • April 15th, 2010

The firm of Simons, Shuttleworth, and French Company, Inc., was one of the first to specialize in exporting apples from the Pacific Northwest to England and the European continent.

The company was organized under the laws of the State of New York in 1907 and formally incorporated in 1908. The [...]

  • Apple Lines–Full access to China needed

Apple Lines–Full access to China needed

  • April 1st, 2010

China is open to Red Delicious apples from Washington. Whereas Red Delicious can be shipped direct to major markets in China, Gala and Granny Smith apples reach China through the gray market via Hong Kong.

Gala and Granny Smith apples grown in Washington State remain officially excluded from China. The [...]

  • Last Bite — Legacy of labels from Montana

Last Bite — Legacy of labels from Montana

  • April 1st, 2010

The Big M Brand is a beautiful example of a rare Montana label; it bears the production date of September 30, 1932, by Traung Label Company. Bitterroot Valley, printed by Schmidt Lithographic Company, and Equity are equally attractive apple labels.

Most fruit box label collectors focus on the Pacific Coast [...]

  • Conversations with the city

Conversations with the city

  • February 15th, 2010

Orchardists represent a sliver of American agriculture. Most of our nation’s farmers grow field crops such as corn, wheat, and soybeans. Many raise livestock, for meat or dairy. Others in the produce sector tend fields of potatoes or carrots or lettuce. All in all, fewer than 2 percent of [...]

Stretching storage of Honeycrisp

  • February 15th, 2010

As production volumes increase for Honeycrisp apples, the need for a longer marketing window becomes more important. Researchers like Ines Hanrahan are looking for ways to stretch storage of Honeycrisp beyond Christmas.

With consumers and retailers clamoring for the popular variety, growers have responded to the strong demand by planting [...]

Moving larger crops in the future

  • February 15th, 2010

Focus on what you can control was the message given to growers by cherry marketers who shared thoughts on how to move larger cherry crops in the future during a panel discussion at the Northwest Cherry Institute meeting in Yakima, Washington.

Last year’s late start of the Northwest cherry season [...]