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Industry Spotlight: Cascade Mountains

Industry Spotlight: Cascade Mountains

What could a mountain range have to do with treefruit? Other than being the home of Rainier Fruit Company’s volcanic namesake, the Cascade Mountains feed the orchards of Eastern Washington with cool snowmelt in lieu of rainfall. Just because something is plentiful doesn’t mean it should be wasted. Rainier Fruit utilizes numerous water-saving methods that conserve resources, all while maintaining quality. So, what makes this agricultural corner of the world so special?

1. Cascade Mountain Range

Stretching 700 miles from Northern California to British Columbia, the Cascades divide Washington State in two—both geographically and weather-wise. The range intercepts nearly all incoming Pacific moisture, supplying Seattle with its famous drizzle and leaving the Eastern side of the state drier than New Mexico.

2. Water in a Desert

While the Cascades block rain from falling onto the orchards of Eastern Washington, they don’t leave them completely high and dry. The range’s 40-odd feet of average yearly snowfall provides a constant supply of water in the form of snowmelt. This water is collected in reservoirs and in-orchard ponds for irrigation, cooling, and frost control.

3. Irrigation Innovation

Rainier Fruit acknowledges this water is a blessing and works to conserve this precious resource through water-optimization practices such as drip irrigation, high-density plantings, soil moisture monitoring probes, and more. Every drop saved reduces energy use and carbon emissions, positively impacting our environment—including the beautiful, snow-capped Cascade Mountains. 

Rainier Fruit Company Industry Spotlight represents individuals and ideas making a positive impact in the community through their work, volunteer efforts, sustainability, or health and wellness initiatives.