Twelve hours of traveling (including three flights) made for a very long trip back to Boston. Despite being exhausted, I couldn’t help but smile when I reflected on the time I spent in Oregon: the tour of Harry and David, our outdoor dinner at Sandy’s house, the meals shared together in Jacksonville and Ashland, the warm welcome and fantastic service provided by Robert and Susan Roos (and their sweet pup, pictured below) at the Magnolia Inn (they make amazing breakfasts, many of which use H&D products). It all made for a wonderful experience.
Harry and David was founded in 1910 and is best known for its mail order Royal Riviera® Pears, which are grown, along with other fruit varietals, at their sixteen orchards in the Rogue Valley. During their annual harvest, the company will pick 700 tons of fruit a day… all of which is done by highly trained workers. And H&D treats their employees well (many of whom have been there for 20+ years). The migrant workers who come for the harvest are not only paid well, but housing and meals are covered. It also says a lot that many of these workers come back year after year.
What surprised me was how many products H&D produces. Besides fruit, they also make their own gourmet chocolates, cookies, cakes (the cheesecake is my litte personal piece of heaven), soup mixes and jams, among other things. Oh, and I can’t forget about Moose Munch. I couldn’t get enough of that stuff.
On our last day of the trip, we were treated to a little surprise: the announcement of their upcoming line of wines. We were the first group to try them and I have to say that I enjoyed each one. They should be rolling that out next year, so stay tuned.
I’m going to be quiet now and let you all take in some of these pictures, which covers everything from our dinner at Sandy’s, the Magnolia Inn (where we stayed), the tours of Harry and David orchards and factory, as well as visits to Peerless and Noble Coffee in Ashland.
Other bloggers/writers who attended:
Magnolia Inn – Medford, OR
Dinner at Sandy and Paul Coughlin’s Home
Harry and David – Medford, OR
Harry and David Staff Pictured: Craig Johnson, CEO (1st photo, right), Matt Borman, Orchard Director (4th photo)
Harry and David Bakery and Candy Kitchen
H&D Staff Pictured: Charlie Douglas, Manager of Research & Development (1st photo, left) and 3rd Generation Candy Maker
Harry and David Packaging Facility
Peerless – Ashland, OR
Noble Coffee – Ashland OR