The birth of Cal-Ore Produce was initiated in the spring
of 1976. Present at the initial meeting were approximately
15 growers, all of which had reputations as quality
potato growers. These growers had previously marketed
their crops through one of many local commercial packing
sheds. In many instances, their quality potatoes were
blended by the commercial sheds with a potato of inferior
quality. In this respect, the end product did not reflect
quality or financial reward due to the grower for his
dedication to quality production.
From this initial meeting, five growers, representing
a production base of approximately 800 acres, agreed
to the formation of Cal-Ore Produce. Negotiations were
initiated to purchase a building and equipment from
Stateline Produce, a packing facility that was discontinuing
operations. Throughout the summer of 1976, extensive
repair and modernization of the facility was undertaken.
Although initial startup was not without problems, plant
efficiency improved with time, and a marketing network
for our product was soon developed.
With the commitment to improve packing equipment and
quality, operations continued until April 30, 1980.
At that time, a fire originating in an adjacent grain
cleaning/storage facility completely consumed the entire
packing shed and contents therein. Grower/Owners were
able to lease a neighboring packing shed and, through
this facility, were able to pack the remaining potatoes
held in storage, thus assuring a dependable supply for
our customers for the remainder of the 1980 shipping
The present site and original building of today’s
facility was purchased in the spring of 1980. Extensive
remodeling of the building was required and a complete
line of packing equipment was installed in time for
the marketing of the new fall crop. To accommodate the
additional capacity of the new packing shed and help
defray extraordinary costs, a sixth partner was accepted
into the organization. Coupled with the production of
the existing owners, the additional partner raised our
grower acreage base to approximately 1100 acres.
During the 1990s, Cal-Ore Produce continued to modernize
and grow. In the early part of the decade, the packing
shed was refitted with all new, state-of-the-art, packing
equipment. To help maintain finished product quality,
a 6000 square foot refrigerated cold storage was added.
In 1993, Cal-Ore Produce acquired John O’Neil
Potato, a highly respected quality potato packing company.
In 1994, due to a serious need for dependable truck
transportation for our customers, Carriage Overland
Transportation was created to service Cal-Ore Produce
throughout the Western United States.
At the end of the decade, Cal-Ore Produce acquired
Maddox Truck Brokerage in order to contain Carriage
Overland’s growing demands. An additional 12,000
square feet of cold storage was added to oblige Cal-Ore
Produce’s growing demand.
Today, Cal-Ore Produce is the largest Grower/Packer/Shipper
of fresh potatoes in either Oregon or California. With
a grower acreage base that has risen to over 3,200 acres,
we’re able to pack and ship over 4000 truckloads
of quality product annually.
For more than 25 years, Cal-Ore Produce has strived
to be the best fresh potato Grower/Packer/Shipper in
the West. Our attention to quality will continue to
reflect our commitment to excellence in the future.