Northwest Cherries business updates - The Packer

Northwest Cherries business updates

05/22/2014 05:11:00 PM
Tom Karst

Borton & Sons strong on rainiers

Yakima-based Borton & Sons Inc. expects to market about 250,000 to 300,000 boxes this year and rainiers will make up about 80,000 to 100,000 boxes, said Ron Everts, grower relation representative with the company.

The company has been marketing cherries about seven years, Everts said. Borton & Sons expects to harvest starting June 5-10, with the harvest continuing to about the third week of July.


Chelan Fresh MarketingCourtesy Chelan Fresh MarketingChelan Fresh promotes cherry cup

A bigger crop and bigger plans for its consumer cup of cherries are on tap for Chelan Fresh Marketing, Chelan, Wash.

The company expects to market about 3.2 million boxes of dark sweets and about 300,000 boxes of rainiers in 2014, said Mac Riggan, marketing director.

Chelan Fresh marketed about 2.6 million boxes of dark sweets and 204,000 boxes of rainiers last year.

Chelan Fresh offers a cup of cherries with a “smart” lid that allows consumers to dispose of the seeds in the lid. Packing line electronic sorting allows easy segregation of cherries with no stems, he said.

“This year we are hoping to quadruple volume,” Riggan said.

Each pack usually includes 26-30 11-row cherries in a 16-ounce cup that equals about one half dry pint.

Riggan said Chelan Fresh plans to double the volume of the Orondo Ruby cherry, with 46,000 boxes.

The variety will be marketed from about June 18 through July 1, he said. The fruit will be offered in 1- and 3-pound clamshells, and exported in 2-kilo boxes.

Chelan Fresh will feature a Disney label promotion with a 2-pound bag and 1-pound clamshells. Riggan said the Disney promotion could account for about 10% of the firm’s cherry sales.


FirstFruits expects early June start

FirstFruits Marketing of Washington LLC, Yakima, expects to market about 500,000 dark sweet cherries and close to 150,000 boxes of rainier cherries in 2014, said Keith Mathews, chief executive officer of the company.

Cherry shipments are expected to start about June 8, Mathews said, and peaks in harvest volumes are expected July 4 and then again in mid-to-late July, Mathews said.

The firm markets cherries from 50 miles south of the Columbia River Oregon to Yakima and Quincy.


Northern Fruit Co. leads with chelans

Northern Fruit Co. plans to handle between 400,000 to 500,000 boxes of cherries this year, said Bill Knight, domestic sales manager for the Wenatchee-based company.

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