Rainier Fruit Co. recently completed construction of its 12th hydro-cooler to help keep its cherries cool.
Selah, Wash.-based Rainier’s hydro-coolers are portable, allowing the company to move them from one of their 22 cherry orchards to another, according to a company news release.
Removing field heat from cherries is an important first step to delivering fresh, firm cherries to consumers, Suzanne Wolter, Rainier’s marketing director, said in the release.
Rainier’s hydro-coolers reduce the internal temperature of cherries by up to 20 degrees, Wolter said.
After they are cooled in the field, cherries are loaded onto refrigerated trucks and shipped to a packing facility, where they are either hydro-cooled again, moved into wind chambers with temperatures near 32 degrees to rapidly cool fruit prior to packing, or both, Wolter said.