Meet Our Growers
The success of our jams and fruit butters is directly tied to the quality of fruit we use. Oregon Growers & Shippers works extensively to identify growers who not only produce the best tasting fruit, but also use sustainable growing practices.
We also believe that the vitality of family farms and local agriculture is important to the quality of life we enjoy here in the Hood River Valley.
Some of the farmers who we credit with making Oregon Growers & Shippers products special:
- Craig McCurdy, McCurdy Farms, Hood River, Oregon: Pears
- Gary Wells, Wells & Sons Farms, Hood River, Oregon: Apples
- Peter and Peggy Kinsey, Kinsey’s Farms, Mosier, Oregon: Cherries
- Scenic Fruit Company, Sandy, Oregon: Strawberries
- West Nut Farms, Dundee, Oregon: Hazelnuts
- Willamette Valley Fruit Company, Willamette Valley, Oregon: Marionberry
Grower Profile: Craig McCurdy, McCurdy Farms
December 1st found Craig McCurdy out in the orchard in the middle of the year’s annual pruning project.
“We are going through and pruning the trees one at a time. It has to be done every year. You have to go through each tree and make the right cuts,” said McCurdy.
Craig McCurdy, right, and Dave Gee
discuss next year’s production
Pruning promotes good health in the Barlett, Anjou and Bosc pears on his 35-acre farm in Hood River.
McCurdy co-owns and operates McCurdy Farms. His parents bought the orchard in 1969. McCurdy learned the business as he grew up and took the helm in 1992.
One of the things McCurdy enjoys most about farming is that he can make his own hours. That gives him the flexibility to spend time with his kids – Malcolm, 12, and Miga, 10. The family enjoys biking, skiing and hiking in the Columbia River Gorge.
“My kid lives in Post Canyon in the summer,” he said.
The most difficult part of the agriculture business, he said, is the simple uncertainty of dealing with a perishable crop. “We never know exactly what the year will bring,” he said.
While McCurdy and his team are busy with pruning, the trees are sleeping, having gone into hibernation as part of their natural cycle.
And though pruning is a labor-intensive process, this day, at least, the weather is cooperating.
“It’s a beautiful day. The sun is shining, Mt. Hood is out, and it is not raining,” said McCurdy.