Treasure Valley creates nearly perfect conditions for tasty apples
TREASURE VALLEY, Idaho (KBOI) - It's apple harvest time in southwest Idaho with the goal to wrap the harvest by the first part of November.
And the Treasure Valley serves up just the right mix of sun, soil, and water to grow quality apples.
"The conditions here are really good to create a good product," said Daniel Rowley with Cherry Hill Farms. "I think we compare just as well to anywhere in the world as far as the quality of apples that we can grow here"
The sturdy apple orchards weathered the severe winter well but when it comes time to pick the fruit, gently is the way to do it.
"The key to picking apples is making sure we don't bruise them when we do it," Rowley said. "You have to grab it with the with the full hand and not the fingertips because you don't want to leave little fingerprints on the apples...little bruises."
From the orchards, these Red Delicious apples head to the packing sheds such as Hengeler's Packing Company in Fruitland where the emphasis on quality continues.
"Insect damage, frost damage, bruises...all that has to be removed before it goes to the consumer," said Ryan Henggeler.
And the apples are treated with tender loving care as they make their way through the packing process.
"We have a brush bed here of 150 brushes," Henggeler said. "We soap every apple and rinse it multiple times."
Buying locally means you'll always get the freshest produce because of the short transport distance to the grocery store.
But these Idaho apples are ready for the worldwide stage as well.
"We ship to Hong Kong Taiwan and India," Henggeler said. "We ship to Russia. But mostly in the United States throughout the entire United States."
Sure, Idaho is famous for its potatoes but never underestimate the power of this specialty crop: Idaho apples.