Meet the Grower: Rowley & Hawkins Fruit Farms

Almost 1,000 acres dedicated to locally grown produce, this is Rowley & Hawkins Fruit Farms!

7 generations deep, it doesn’t get more local than this. 

With Mark Rowley helping lead the way, this family farm covers the full spectrum of produce. From the gorgeous Rainier cherries to Cosmic Crisp apples, this farm generates millions of pounds of produce a year. 

With a processing facility dedicated to preserving the fruits and deliveries of fresh fruit for the Northwest, this family farm truly does it all. We are proud to carry as much fresh produce from this farm as possible – with incredible family values, a true love for our community, and a high quality product packed with flavor, the produce from Rowley & Hawkins Fruit Farms is truly exceptional. 

We went all over this incredible farm to show you the art, the science, the passion, and the true hard work that goes into farming produce like this. From sprouting fruit trees to harvesting cherries by hand, this truly is working the land. 

Employing over 500 people throughout the year across the farm, the processing facility pits 4 million pounds of cherries a year. Destined to be made into delicious pies and serve as ingredients for people all over the world, there are so many incredible ways to enjoy these fruits. From tart cherries stored in sugar syrups to dehydrated apple slices, their production facility creates a huge variety of incredible preserved fruits. 

Fresh and local is a huge focus for this family farm. Delivering their fresh produce across the Northwest and all the way to Utah and Montana, you can find their produce right here at Andy’s. With a growing demand for fresh fruits, this farm now dedicates 35% of their production to supplying fresh produce across the northwest, and is continuing to provide even more fresh produce options each year. We love staying local, and we love eating Best in Season. 

How do the fresh cherries make it from the fruit trees to your kitchen? Cherries are picked and processed to be available to you almost immediately. The fresh produce industry comes with a fast countdown – from the moment the fruit is picked, the race to bring you the freshest produce possible begins. 

After the sweet cherries we love to enjoy by the handful are picked from the trees, they are brought back to the processing facility for cleaning. Dunked into an acid bath, these cherries are cleaned and sorted by color and size. Once the quality standards are met, the cherries are packaged up to be delivered to places like Andy’s and the Rowley’s & Hawkins fresh fruit location in Tri Cities, FreshPicks.

At Rowley’s, they are true professionals. Growing 6 varieties of sweet cherries this year; you can enjoy Rainier, Bing, Cashmere, Benton, Santina, and Chelan cherries. But, this farm produces MUCH more than just our favorite cherries. They also grow delicious Robada apricots and apples that are also found in our stores while they are best in season. The apricot season is quick – you can enjoy this delicious fruit in our stores for just a few weeks! 

The sweet cherry season begins in June and ends in July – with Best in Season produce, we enjoy them fresh while we can. But, don’t worry, shortly after fresh cherries we carry fresh from the farm apples! Beginning in August and going through October, fresh apples are harvested and can be found at our locations for you to enjoy. 

With varieties of all kinds, you are guaranteed to find your favorite apple varieties locally grown right here in Eastern Washington. 

It’s not as simple as planting a tree and watching it grow – farming takes true precision and knowledge. With a commitment to diversified products, and in keeping local products available for as long as possible, great attention and detail are given to each plant. Growing multiple different cherry varieties extends the fresh sweet cherry season and allows us all to enjoy a larger variety of crops. Rowley’s is always looking for ways to bring fresh fruit to more people, for longer. 

Did you know that many fruit trees, like apricots, can’t be planted only with their own species? Many fruit trees need other species to be planted with them to allow for proper pollination – it really is all about community, isn’t it? You will want to pick up the Rowley & Hawkins Fruit Farm produce in our store each time they are available, and stay tuned for another Meet the Grower during homemade cider season! It is our passion to offer you the best local produce and to support as many local growers as we can. 

Your destination for nourishing food, we love to partner with our local farms to serve our incredible Walla Walla Valley. 

  • Andy’s Market 
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