Shannon Dininny, Good Fruit Grower, on April 25, 2019 in Yakima, Washington. (TJ Mullinax/Good Fruit Grower)
Shannon Dininny

For the 26th year, Good Fruit Grower is proudly honoring an outstanding grower with its Grower of the Year award, and this year, we recognize a family that has contributed to this industry for decades: the McDougall family in Wenatchee, Washington.

If you are a regular reader of this magazine, there’s no doubt you’ve heard of them. They are known for being innovative growers: Scott has been and continues to be a regular host for research trials and field days in his meticulously maintained modern orchards, while brother Stuart has managed the packing side of the business where he’s embraced innovation as well. Their sons, Bryon and Matt, aim to continue their legacy of excellence.

Kate Prengaman and TJ Mullinax visited the McDougalls this fall to talk about the evolution of their business, both in size and focus, and to glean a few more tidbits about their practices. We hope you will enjoy reading more about them in this issue (see Building their legacy).

I’ll be presenting the McDougall family with their award at the industry’s celebration banquet on Dec. 6 in Wenatchee — one of my favorite parts of the Washington State Tree Fruit Association Annual Meeting. 

Which means it’s that time again.

Amid the flurry of finishing harvest and preparing for the holidays, we commence the season of industry meetings and trade shows. Personally — though it means the Good Fruit Grower staff busily ramps up to produce two issues a month to keep you abreast of the latest information — I find this “conference season” rewarding, because growers often have a bit more time to chat about what’s on their minds.

So, I look forward to visiting with all of you in December and, to those I miss, may you enjoy a wonderful holiday with friends and family and be restored for another season.

by Shannon Dininny