Cherry Crop Update

It’s official: cherry season has arrived! As we speak, produce displays, fruit stands and shopping baskets are filling with yellow, blush and dark crimson cherries just begging to be brought home and devoured.

And cherries go with the 4th of July like boats go with water. Company picnics, town celebrations and family camping trips all include bowls or recipes filled with Dark Sweet Cherries, Rainier Cherries and our own proprietary Orondo Ruby®.

There are many reasons to eat cherries. They’re a good source of vitamin C, fiber and potassium, and are celebrated for being rich in antioxidants. Research has even shown that they can help reduce pain and inflammation associated with arthritis and gout. Oh, and they’re sweet and absolutely delicious!

Check out our cherry recipes, including this unique Chilled Cherry Soup. Using cherries in recipes is incredibly simple. Our cherry soup looks fancy and tastes more complicated than it really is. This recipe will impress your guests and can be served as a starter or as a dessert. Yes, you read that right!

Borton Fruit joins Chelan Fresh

When families with over 100 years of farming experience come together, you know you will continue to receive the freshest fruit Washington state has to offer. Yakima’s sunny valleys coupled with the mountain altitudes of North Central Washington come together to provide fruit availability with longer growing seasons and cool, crisp air to produce tasty, high-color fruit.  Family operations that pride themselves on their state-of-the-art processing facilities and innovative growing practices will continue to pack Washington’s Finest Mountain Grown Fruit.

This merger will also increase the volume of some of the most in demand apples in the marketplace today: Honeycrisp, new strains of high color Gala and Fuji in addition to everyone’s darling Rockit Apple®.

The merger also combines two sales companies, Chelan Fresh and Borton Fruit, with long histories of customer service. Chelan Fresh and Borton Fruit know that by providing exceptional customer service we can set ourselves apart with retail accounts. We will continue our appointment loading program to enable trucks to load fruit in the most efficient way possible – on time and on their way within and hour of checking into our facilities. Our customers are important to us and we will continue to strive to exceed your expectations.

As September 1st nears, we will provide more updates on our merger. Please feel free to reach out to your Chelan Fresh or Borton Fruit sales representative if you have questions.
Trout & Borton boxes

Meet the Grower

Chelan Fresh is proud to represent the growers of Chelan, Douglas and Okanogan counties in Washington State. In the coming months we will regularly introduce them to you in our “Meet the Grower” series. Check in regularly with our blog – To The Core – to find out what’s happening in the orchards that produce some of Washington’s Finest Mountain Grown Fruit.

This month we are talking with David Taber Jr. in Oroville, Washington. To learn more about David, visit our blog post.Red Sweet Cherries 

Freeze and Store

Freezing Cherries

People forget that you can freeze and store cherries simply and easily.

  1. Purchase extra quantities of your favorite cherry
  2. Rinse cherries and lay flat on paper towels to dry
  3. Remove the pits now or just leave the pits in and plan to pit the cherries when they thaw
  4. Gently fold into a freezer bag or freezer proof container
  5. Thaw the cherries out as needed. They make a great semi-frozen treat, use frozen, pitted cherries in smoothies or thaw for your favorite recipe.
  6. Freeze large quantities so you can enjoy cherries all year long! 

Employee Spotlight

Desiree Phelps

Meet Desiree Phelps, one of our Accounting Specialists! She works on Account Receivables and handling claims and files that end up out of balance.

Name: Desiree Phelps

Position: Accounting Specialist III

Favorite Apple: A Golden Delicious picked right off the tree is my favorite for sure! I have such fond memories of climbing the huge Golden Delicious trees that my dad had in our orchard and picking the biggest apple I could find right off the tree and enjoying every last juicy bite. No other apple compares to that.

Favorite Cherry: My favorite cherry is Orondo Ruby® for its firmness and sweet tart flavor.

Favorite part of working at Chelan Fresh: My favorite part about working at Chelan Fresh is my co-workers. We have a great team here that works hard but we love to laugh and joke around and have fun too!

Favorite thing to do outside of work: My husband and I have four kids and we love to follow all of their activities that they participate in each year. I also have started and coach a sand volleyball club in Chelan that has kids from ages 8-17 participating and traveling as teams to compete all over the state of Washington. The City of Chelan recognized the popularity of this program and supported us by adding sand courts at the local park that are used all day long. We even host tournaments now. Chelan Fresh has also stepped up and supported the volleyball club called Kahiau which means “To give back”. I am very thankful to work for an employer like Chelan Fresh who supports community programs such as Kahiau.

Category Opportunities

It’s Cherry season and the US retail results are in for the month of May! Despite a later start than last year – which resulted in steep declines for the month – this promises to be a very dynamic and exciting year. With a solid and strategic retail plan in place, this crop year will deliver profitable Year Over Year category growth all the way through August… and possibly even into September!

Our Category Management team can customize the data to meet your individual market needs and partner with you to drive the most cherries through the register as possible. Let us know when you are ready to dive in!

Click the image below to download the file.

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