China opens to Washington State apples

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  • Last Bite – A double-duty fruit box label

Last Bite – A double-duty fruit box label

  • February 1st, 2010

The ranch house still exists but the sign identifying the property, which was unusual for an area fruit ranch, is long gone.

Ordinarily, this column begins with a history of an individual or company that was responsible for a particular label or label design. However, the unique quality of the [...]

Wine market trends

  • February 1st, 2010

 About 250,000 wine SKUs (store keeping units) must funnel through fewer than 700 distributors to reach 450,000 wine-selling locations.

Wine producers are learning that in this down economy, it’s much easier to make the wine than sell it, says a Napa, California, wine business consultant.

Barbara Insel, president and CEO of [...]

Washington wine industry should tell its story

  • February 1st, 2010

Although Washington State’s wine industry is well positioned in the current ‘value-driven’ wine market, a wine consultant from Napa, California, offers some suggestions to help build demand for Washington wines.

Barbara Insel, president of Stonebridge Research Group, spent a few days visiting vineyards and wineries from Washington’s Walla Walla Valley [...]

  • Turn tasting room visits into sales

Turn tasting room visits into sales

  • February 1st, 2010

Winery owners must have solid financial management in place, says Barbara Insel, and that would include cutting out wines that are not profitable.

With a backlog of wine inventories clogging wine distribution channels, direct marketing offers wineries a chance to supplement sales and keep cash flow moving. A wine business [...]

  • Creating brand identity

Creating brand identity

  • February 1st, 2010

Pacific Rim’s wine portfolio includes dry and sweet Riesling, Chenin Blanc, Gewürztraminer, and a few blends, but the brand identity of “Riesling Rules” pervades all communications.

In the hands of a creative marketer, 15 years of sweat and research can be boiled down to one word: BOING. That’s the tag [...]

  • Seeking strength in adversity

Seeking strength in adversity

  • January 15th, 2010

The disastrous 2009 Northwest cherry deal could be a catalyst for change, resulting in a stronger industry, industry representatives said during a panel discussion at the Washington State Horticultural Association’s annual meeting.

Last season, the Northwest cherry industry packed 22.5 million boxes of fresh cherries, more than double the short [...]

  • Cherries in Chile

Cherries in Chile

  • January 15th, 2010

Shawn Gay visits a high-producing Bing, Lapins, and Sweetheart orchard in the Puente Negro area of Chile.

Like other fruit-growing regions around the world, Chile is seeing a rapid expansion of its cherry industry. Its wide range of climates allows its cherry growers to have cherries on the world market [...]

  • Taking cover

Taking cover

  • January 15th, 2010

Iuar Iraira (foreground), manager of the Fundo Agua Buena orchard (in the center picture), discusses the Voen louvered rain cover with international visitors. The area, south of Temuco, receives more than 70 inches of rainfall annually.

Producing some of the latest maturing cherries in Chile is Leonardo Salas’s competitive advantage—and [...]

  • Nursery goes high-tech

Nursery goes high-tech

  • January 15th, 2010

This machine carries five workers on seats through a block of nursery trees to remove suckers. The machine can be used without seats but with different attachments for spraying and weed control.

A nursery in Chile is using the latest equipment to cut the labor involved in growing the branched [...]

  • Cherries with a challenge

Cherries with a challenge

  • January 15th, 2010

Chilean cherry grower Pablo Garcés (fourth from left) is general manager and part owner of 800 growing hectares (almost 2,000 acres), half of the acreage is planted with cherries.

Former agronomist Oscar Letelier decided to become an orchardist the hard way by growing organic cherries. He is one of very [...]

  • Swiss company expands to Chile

Swiss company expands to Chile

  • January 15th, 2010

Ditzler uses five machines to harvest sweet dark cherries for processing into yogurts and ice creams. Cherries are harvested day and night.

A Swiss company that produces frozen fruits for yogurts and ice creams is growing some of its cherries in Chile.

Arturo Garcia, general manager of an orchard at Morza, [...]

  • Who’s pushing red strains?

Who’s pushing red strains?

  • January 15th, 2010

Yakima, Washington, grower-packer Dave Allan doesn’t think consumers are the ones demanding redder apples.

The worldwide popularity of Gala, a variety that originally was an apple with orange-red stripes and a cream-yellow background, would seem to prove that red color does not beat eating quality.

Although there is concern that Gala [...]