The Oregon statesman. (Salem, Or.) 1916-1980, October 13, 1929, Page 12, Image 12

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This Week's Slogan:
The Prune Industry of the
Salem Section Is Decidedly
On Way to Brighter Times
There Is Perhaps a 70 Million Pound Dried
Crop All But Safe; Requiring Only Fair
Weather Conditions In Douglas County
The prune industry of the Sa
lem district Is decidedly on its
way to recoyeryi after a prolonged
sick spell. If heavy fall rains
hold off over the Douglas connty
prune districts for two to three
weeks yet, the harvest this year
will show a total dried tonnage of
CO to 70 million pounds. The
crop of Salem district, counting
this as the whole Willamette val
ley, will be 90 per cent safe in
the bins by the time this article
Is printed, Sunday, the 13th and
a few additional days will seethe
'whole crop saved. The rains so
far have done more good than
harm; that is the showers that
have visited the orchards the past
week or so.
. Bat something unusual has
happened tbis year tbe Donglas
connty crop is ranch later than
that of the Willamette valley; two
to three weeks later. In ordinary
years It Is earlier in ripening.
What caused this? Perhaps for
one thing, the heavier pall of
smoke from forest fires tn the
early part of the ripening season.
The rest of it is unexplained
unless that is all of it. Then
Douglas county is not as well sup
plied with drying facilities as the
valley counties, in proportion to
the tonnage of green fruit to be
taken care of.
They have been claiming for
Douglas county 18 to 20 million
pounds of dried prunes from the
present crop, if all of it could be
saved. A well qualified Salem
authority thinks that is an over
estimate. He adds that the Wil
lamette valley crop will over run
rather than fall short of the esti
mates. And he further adds that
the best yields in quantity and
quality have predominated in the
Dallas, Sheridan and Kewberg
sections, and that the medium
high land on the east and west
floors of the valley have made the
best showings.
Decidedly More Cheerful
The average price realized by
the growers for their dried prunes
of this year's crop will run to 7
scents a pound or better. The
average is raised by the greater
proportion of large sizes than was
expected the larger sizes of
course commanding the higher
As the reader will observe, this
means between four and a quarter
to over five million dollars of new
money coming to the growers this
year for their prunes. For a
large tonnage was canned, and
these are not counted with the
dried product in the above esti
mate. The bulk of this live millions
of new money, (if the tonnage
UH3 to 70 millions), comes to the
Ewers of the Willamette val
ley; a liltle of it to the growers
ol Clarktonnty, Wash., and the
rest of it to ' those of Douglas
cmnty. The Salem district will
get the lion's share. It makes a
b g and wide distribution of new
i rutney
to the pickers, dryers,
handlers, dealers and
J Imr
ft ri ime Now to Begin Dotting
Flax Plants,
With Proper Organization, Federal Money Is
Available to Build
Prepare the Fiber
Col. W. B. Bartram, superinten
dent of the state flax plant and
managing director of the Oregon
Linen Mills, Inc., on Tuesday last
addressed the Oregon City cham
ber of commerce. He there made
the most important talk he so far
has made -on the development of
Oregon industries. He declared
that 4t weuld require 10,000
acres of fiber flax to take care
of our country's imports in rough
flax fiber from abroad. And he
asserted that the Willamette val
ley is ready now for action; that
vre may get the necessary money
from the federal government for
dotting the Willamette valley with
flax plants. The following is the
full text of Colonel Bartram's ad
dress: "It is very gratifying to the
management of the state flax in
Oregon and her people, that mark-
fed-progress has been made in the
development cf the flax industry.
The progress made may be appre
ciated when I tell you that the en
tire operations of seeding, pulling
and processing are now done by
machinery. Only a few years ago
these operations were "all carried
' on by hand labor. Today we have
In Oregon the largest and most
modern flax plant in the world.
This has been made possible by
certain factors that were necessary
" to such a development.
; In western Oregon we have the
required climate and soils to suc
cessfully raise fiber flax.
; ; From 14 years experience we
have established the fact that we
do rase and process the best fi-
J-bexJW-rJn the world.
3?t" has found favor In
. -ill jut In home mar-
ar present ability to
. jr flax crop assists
In replav. other crops are now
overdone and adds Inducement to
proper rotation of crops In gen
eraL -7, ....
These factors have been estab
lished after years of patient hard
work, believing that the greatest
flax development on this contin
1 ent was to be worked out here in
rthe .Willamette valleys and confi
dence In the ultimate success of
41te (nttetw'- '
This all means that the indus
try will persist. The acreage will
be larger next year than this. New
orchards will come into bearing,
and fuller bearing with the
growth of the young trees. Some
old orchards and parts of others
will go out. But most old or
chards will bave better attention
next year than they have had late
ly, in the times of low prices and
short crops that have prevailed
for several seasons.
And the great majority of the
trees, at least for some time, will
be of the tlallan or Oregon varie
ty. There are not many petite
or French prune trees In the Wil
lamette valley. In Douglas coun
ty the proportion of these is
There are some new sweet
prune varieties, such as the date
prunes, the Noble French, and
others. But it will take a long
time to bring on a great acreage
of these. With several of the new
varieties, experiments have not
gone far enough to justify great
What Caused ItT
What caused the price come
back for our dried prunes? The
late prices have been running to
10 cents a pound to the growers,
for 20-30's, that is dried prunes
20 to 30 of which will weigh a
There was a world shortage of
the prune crops this year. Cali
fornia had 440 million pounds last
ear, and less than 200 million
pounds this year. And there was
no carry over this year, as there
was last year.
Then central European coun
tries had a short crop this year,
and the French crop has been slip
ping for several years. It will
take these countries years to bring
back their orchards, if they ever
are brought back. The world will
always need and buy dried
The distribution this year is
wider than ever. They are going
from Oregon to Germany and cen
tral Europe, to the British Isles,
and to all the southern European
countries, to the Mediteranean
ports, and to most other countries,
to say nothing of an increased dis
tribution in the United States.
For Better Methods
II. S. Gile of H. S. Gile & Co.,
who buy all over this sectron and
have packing plants at Newberg
and Hoseburg, and who with W.
T. Jenks manages tbe Willaniette
Valley Prune association with its
packing plant at the Fruit Union
building In Salem, said Friday
that of course the prune in our
prune industry should and will
persist. It should and the orch
ards should and will have better
attention than they have been hav
ing. There should and will be new
acreage, and the revamping of old
orchards. There should and will
be a- better average, higher aver
age tonnage and a better average
Valley With
Says Bartram
and Equip These, to
for Home Markets
The state flax industry has
proven beyond all question that
fiber flax is one of the most prof
itable field crops, wnen grown ac
cording to the policies adopted by
that industry. We know that we
are producing the finest fiber flax
grown in any country, and we
feel that we have proven our sys
tem . by methods of cultivation,
harvesting and processing, and
that producer-owned, cooperative
associations may now safely as
sist in the further development of
what promises to become a major
industry In the Willamette valley.
Federal Aid Available
In view of a certain bill that
has been adopted and passed by
our congress through an act
known as the "agricultural mar
keting act," which has made
available $500,000,000 to be us
ed in the development and mar
keting of agricultural products
would appear we may safely ex
pand the fiber flax Industry with
out further delay. I believe that
the true Intent, of this bllr Was to
assist In the development of - this
crop and the processing of , it, be
cause In doing so relief and in
creased prosperity will come about
through such action.
Vou, no doubt, are familiar
with the "Industrial marketing
act." but let ns review it in its
application to the development of
the fiber flax industry through
cooperative associations.
The act provides that upon ap
plication by any cooperative asso
ciation the Federal farm board is
Keep Tour Money in Oregon
Bay Monuments Made at
Salem. Oregon
Capital Monumental Works
J. C Jones A Ce Proprietors
All Kinds of Monumental
1 Factory and Office:
2210 S. Commercial St.
Opposite I. O. O. P.
' Cemetery, Box SI -Phone
CSf Salem. Oregon
Our Prune Industry la Coming Back
to Be and Stay Big
authorized to make a loan from
tbe revolving fund. It provides
that this loan shall be used in ef
fective merchandising; in educa
tional work; In securing through
construction, purchase, or lease,
facilities for preparing, handling,
storing, processing, or merchan
dising agricultural products.
Through this provision a coopera
tive association may secure a loan
up to SO per cent of its valuation.
These loans are repaid on an
amortization plan over a period
not In excess of 25 years.
Can Go Ahead Now
We feel that with this financial
assistance available, the fiber flax
cooperative associations could he
organized at once in a number of
the fiber flax districts, and then
proceed with a plan as outlined in
the "agricultural marketing act"
which provides:
1. That a cooperative associa
tion be organized in accordance
with the plan defined la an act
approved by congress February
18, 1922, calling "an act to auth
orise associations for agricultural
products." These cooperative as
sociations should, of course, be
known as fiber flax cooperative
2. Appoint an advisory com
mittee consisting of seven mem
bers of whom at least two should
be experienced handlers or pro
cessors of the commodity. The
advisory committee acts as repre
sentatives of the cooperative as
sociations on all matters referred
to the federal farm board and also
in carrying out the educational
programs. Members of the advi
sory committee do not receive a
salary, but are paid on a per' diem
basis for services authorized by
the federal farm board.
3. Organize a stabilization
corporation in which all stock
shall be owned by the cooperative
association. The stabilization cor
poration act is to minimise spec
ulation, prevent Inefficiency and
wasteful methods of distribution
and aid in preventing and control
ling surplus, to prevent excessive
fluctuation or depression in price.
The stabilization corporation acts
as a marketing agency, and upon
request of the advisory committee
the federal farm board is author
ized to make loans for working
The "agricultural marketing
act" provides for a clearing house
association, but in my judgment
this would be unnecessary at this
time, as the functioning of a sta
bilization corporation would cov
er the present need of the fiber
flax cooperative associations.
There are also other miscellaneous
provisions which I will not go in
to at this time.
Time Is Opportune
Gentlemen, it would appear
there never was a more oppor
tune time than now for expanding
the fiber flax industry, and I have
Prune Industry is Coming Back
OUR prune industry is coming back. Our growers of what
is called the Salem district, including Douglas and Clark
county and upper valley sections, will receive for their dried
prunes and those sold to the canneries perhaps as much as
or more than five millions of dollars of new money the bulk
of the sum coming to the Salem trade territory.
Moreover, the world wide outlook appears favorable for
our prune industry. The French orchards are slipping. So
are those of central Europe.
amette valley in full or near
many as they have ever been ;
Good attention to the orchards, which will likely be gen
erally had hereafter, owing to
erative prices, will soon stabilize that part of the industry.
This is an encouraging sign for
ter of a great prune section;
have been for a long time, and
There is a report in this
Col. W. B. Bartram on Tuesday last, delivered before the Ore
gon City chamber of commerce
And it is the most important talk the chief figure of
our flax industry has ever made in favor of state develop
He says the time has come when a movement may be
safely launched for dotting the Willamette valley with flax
plants. He says this may be done by securing federal loans
to build the plants. The money is available. It has been set
aside for just such a purpose, or such purposes.
' Every valley city should
busy. There is a chance to
and put it on its way to bringing hither many millions of dol
lars annually of new money.
neip enormously in our prosperity ana soua growin.
Gideon Stols
liaaaiactwrer of
Vinegar, Soda Water,
Fountain Supplies
M Ore.
Oi egon Pulp and
Paper Company
Manufacturers of
Support Oregon Products
Specify "Salem Made" Paper for Your
Office Stationery
no hesitation In urging represen
tatives of the flax growing dis
tricts to give this matter their
most serious consideration. I be
lieve it is such an opportunity as
never came before yon to do some
thing really worth while in tbe
relief of our farmers and the re
generation of agriculture in the
Willamette valley.
You have listened with such a
degree of interest, that I feel I
may safely go a step further in
this matter by stating that I feel
that we, who are gathered here
today, should endorse the expan
sion of the fiber flax industry
through producer-owned, coopera
tive associations and that we
should recommend to the Port
land chamber of commerce that
Mr. Kipp, their marketing special
ist, be authorized to assist in or
ganizing these cooperative asso
ciations. No one appreciates more than I
the service that Is being rendered
the state of Oregon through the
Portland chamber of commerce.
Many of you know that It was
through the confidence of their
able manager. Mr. W. D. B. Dod
son and, at that time, their presi
dent, Mr. Andrews, that the pur
chase of the first stateowned flax
pulling machines was made pos
sible. At that time the state was
unable to fully finance the pur
chase of the first fleet of flax
pulling machines that came into
Oregon. The Portland chamber
of commerce advanced 115.000 to
assist in this service. The ad
vent of these machies in eliminat
ing the unsatisfactory and expen
sive old method of hand pulling
started the flax lndusrty toward
the position It has worked itself
into today.
Develop Under Control
It is important for me to again
emphasize the necessity of keep
ngi this whole development under
control, and under the guidance
of those who have made some
progress with the industry thus
far. The question of organization
and management will be the de
termining factor as to its suc
cess in the future, and as to bow
far it will expand.
In closing, let me say that the
state flax industry stands ready
to assist and guide this develop
ment through the state along the
same lines and under tbe same
policies that have brought our
present success.
Claims totaling $1315.70 have
been paid to Statesman readers
by the North American Accident
Insurance Co., in the past year.
These claims were paid on the
31.00 policy Issued to Statesman
For sale signs, for rent signs,
legal blanks, etc. for sale at The
The prune trees of the Wil-
full bearing are perhaps as
they may be larger in number.
the better outlook for remun
Salem. This city is the cen
prunes are a major crop here
will likely persist in being.
department of an address by
sit up and take notice, and get
push the flax industry forward
Good money. Money that will
Everything In
Cobb & Mitchell
A. B. Ketsay, Maaager
S4 & 12th BC " Pstsa SIS
Prunes May be Graded on
Quality as Well as Their
Size in Markets Hereafter
The Oregon Agricultural College Experiment
Station Staff Members Are Patenting the
Process for the Protection of All
Growers and the Public
(The following, furnished for
this issue of The Statesman by
John C. Burtner, associate direct
or of the college news service,
would seem to be information of
prime Importance to the people of
this section who are engaged in
the various forms of the prune
industry: )
As the popular song writer
said: "The baby prune looks like
his dad, but not wrinkled quite
as bad." And so far tbe public
has been able to choose only be
tween "baby" or "daddy" prunes
for breakfast.
But like many another, this re
semblance in the prune family
has been found only skin deep,
and a baby prune, fully mature, is
often much sweeter, firmer, and
of better flavor than large
prune picked when not fully ripe.
A new process, by which the
prune crop of Oregon and the
northwest may be graded uniform
ly, not only as to size but also as
to maturity, sugar content, and
texure. before drying, has just
been perfected and patented by
the horticultural products depart
ment of the Oregon experiment
The public service patent,
granted to E. H. Wiegand, head
of the department, and D. E. Bui-
US', assistant chemist, protects the
public against payment of royal
ties in case the new method comes
into general use. A similar pat
ent has also been applied for on
You trill find in De Soto
Six 'the eye-appeal of
trim, colorful lines the
comfort-appeal of roomi
ness, of easy handling and
riding the practical ap
peal of smooth, flexible
action and the universal
appeal of a sensationally
low price.
360 Marion
PRICESr-Delivered fully equipped at
360 Marion Street
a machine developed at the col
lege to apply the prune grading
process in a commercial way.
How It Is Done
Although it has long been
known that maturity was a great
er factor in quality of prunes tban
size, up to the present they have
been graded only as to size, for
lack of any known mechanical
means of separating the mature
from the Immature fruit.
The process patented by the ex
periment station men is based on
the fact that mature fruit, being
of greater sugar content, is heav
ier, and here fore sinks in a dens
er solution than Immature fruit.
By providing a series of two or
three vats of varying density of
salt solutions and moving the
trait through these mechanically,
the different grades are floated
out and separated accurately.
The heavier prunes are also
the beet when dried, from tbe
standpoint of appearance and by
the most exacting physical and
chemical tests. Investigation of
the dried product showed that
those prunes floated out of a 40
degree solution were porous, acid,
and of low sugar content, while
those floated out Of a CO degree
solution were of finer texture,
greater firmness, more pleasing
flavor and were a desirable Jet
black color.
Because of the variation in
moisture content of fruit in dif
ferent stages of maturity, it is
Hike Mara0
Tfeadke Dan
Yfapiraii0 (DM (Dam0
Automatically, the age of your
car goes up one whole year on
January first. Inevitably, the
new models that come out dur
ing the January Motor Shows
will antiquate it still further.
Just as surely, Spring finds an
overcrowded used car market
which lessens your chances of
getting what you think you
should get for your car.
The moral: SAVE MONEY,
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also better. In the Interests of
speed and economy in drying, that
the tunnels should contain only
fruit of the aame degree of ma
turity. This also makes for a
more uniform dried product, as
when fruits in varions stages of
maturity are placed on the same
tray or car,, the mature fruits,
relatively low In moisture, are
over-dried in the effort to obtain
the proper degree of dryness for
the under-mature fruit.
Experiments Satisfactory
During the 19 2 S season, find
ings made at tbe college on a
small scale were tested commer
cially by the installation In an
Oregon cooperative parking plant
of a machine designed to handle
prune grading by the flotation
principle. More than 10 tons of
fresh fruit were graded over this
machine. Its operation was high
ly satisfactory, and the findings
made by the experiment station
when men in the horticultural
products laboratory were entirely
borne out.
These machmes could be in
stalled in commercial plants, with
out any great increase in the costs
of production, believes Professor
Wiegand, as the grader would
take the place of the dipper now
used. The machines work rapid
ly, and could easily be accommo
dated to any size output. The so.
lutions for floating out the prunes
are made with coarse salt, which
is both cheap and harmless.
Other factors brought out by
Professor Wiegand and Mr. Bullis
during tbe investigations are as
"The prunes handled through
out these experiments contained
much infected fruit. Unfortu-,
nately for the industry, that situa
tion prevails generally. The in
fection was due principally to scab
and brown rot. The separation
of scabby fruit can not be accom
plished by any method of gravity
separation. It was thought that
by the decomposition occurring in
prunes affected by brown rot their
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composition would be sufficiently
changed to Influence their speci
fic gravity. It was found, how
ever, that fresh fruit Infected
with brown rot had to be In an
advanced state of decomposition
to make possible Its separation
from non-Infected fruit by the flo
tation process. Only when the
brown rot had advanced so far
that the fruit had become partly
mummified could1 It readily be
separated out in the lighter grav
ity solutions. It would seem,
therefore, that separation of this
type of infected fral from perfect
fruit must be accomplished mostly
by hand sorting over belts before
running any lot through a grav
ity separator.
These are some quotations from
the report: Separation Into
quality grades by the flotation
process seems most feasible when
applied to fruit in the fresh state.
The results are sure, the cost is
law, and many advantages are
gained by this method from a.
drying standpoint. But notwith
standing the advantages gained
by gravity separations, it must be
remembered that good fruit can
be ruined by careless operations
in the drying process and thereby
all the effort spent on separations
go for naught.
"In recognition of this fact,
some attempt has been made to
ascertain whether fruit affected
with various forms of spoilage
might not be successfully separaU
ed out from the good by some
change in the usual method of
processing. A simple experiment
shows that It can be.
"The dried fruit affected with
these various forms of spoilage
was processed in boiling water in
stead of live steam, which is one
of the common commercial meth
ods. Fruit with large gas pock
ets and that which was badly
burned or poorly dried, floated to
the surface of the boiling water,
where it was readily skimmed off.
The firm-textured product re
mained beneath tbe surface.
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Telephone 928
Salem, Ore.
r I '