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Newspaper Page Text
Changes in Western Fruit Jobbing
I lit : 1 1. tea (m I -4 1' 4 . -.-.Jtli-..- ......... i " m 11.. ! ii m win nr rrilTiliW"! IIANDLINO CALIFORNIA ORANOESL BUYER INSPECTING APPLES. ilin wholesale fruit business 01 I I Omaha, according to estimate I of men oromlnent In the trade. amount yearly to between $1,6 . 000 and $2,000,000. This Is handled. toy a few flrtnil only and has grown to its present proportions In a short time. Fifteen years ago Omaha wai auch a amall market for fruit that very much the greater part of tht demanded came here from Chicago. JSven the California fruits were shipped their first und omall consignments aent . fc.ek weat. The fruit men of this city get tholr supplies In car lota from the part ot the country where the frulta are grown. They have caleamen constantly on the rood getting distributing orders from thla man kef. The fruit business has grown In fifteen years from four causes, and the result la that the lonsumer now la ablo to buy aU most any fruit through almost twice the, ivumbcr of- months In which It was form erly procurable. The causca which liava brought thla about are, first, the Introduce tlon of cold atoruge and transportation In refrigerator cars. Fifteen yeara ago thert was no cold atnruge, although some housos were kept chilled with Ice, Hut thea were few. Perishable frulta were stored la basements and other cool places. Tha wholesale buyers had to be very much mora careful so as not to get an over-supply of pertahable fruit on hand. With the lntro durtlon of modern cold storage plants, the Jobtier was enabled to kep certuln fruits much longer. Ap plea are noticeably ufTwtrd and are noi kept In stock nearly the whole year, bit months of this Urns lit the ohllled ware iiouxes. Winter puurs are also stored In this way fur rather long periods. Lemons, oranges, pcuchea and gropes are frequently cold stored for short periods thirty or sixty days but cannot bo kept In thU way much longer, Tha refrigerator car wua not used for fruit fifteen yeara ago, Ventllutlon was trusted to and a great loss In fruit resulted In transit. The ven tilated oars were run on pmnengpr trains for quick service. Thla cost Omaha co.n tnlrttilon houses f4U u car. The refriger lator our In summer comes with the freight trains, but the cost of Ice mnkes It neixrly us expt-nslve as the old pavsmscr aervloo. The fruit arrives, however. In much better condition. These cars have the ndvuntngo of being useful In winter, being tightly closod ugitlnst tho outer cold, or even supplied with u little stove for keeping the lemteruluro above f renins:. This imikra possible shlpmcnta at a tlmo of the yrur when a depleted market In the Old days could not be, aupilled. More aientino fruit culture Is another Improvement, causing a broader harvest. Formerly but one or two etundurd varieties pt any fruit were grown In suMcient quan tity for their use throughout tho. coun try, These ripened within a period of ft few weeks, and were gone, liy vclentino work the varieties havo been ao Inci-cased (hat now thera ar very early, early, biter, lata and very lata, ef almost every fruit. With an endless variety of also and flavor. With tha spread of Irrigation In the west. Which haa so largely Inereased the fruit acreage, all of the varieties aro grown la larga quantity. Up to only five years ao (l r, 0 i f. "" ' U;V tr$ Y-; ' f" J '; . ' r; ' ' lminn'l " '? 1 L "TUB BANANA MAN." California oranges were seldom handled In Omaha after July, while now they last until December. The navel orange hus come In since 18st. The same thing Is true AN APPLE CONSUMER. Of nil other fruit. Combination is another thing which haa changed the wholesale fruit business. For merly It was every grower for himself. Back the First Principles WW OU enn Inlnir from now till you are a hundred In trying to equip railrouds with devices to secure safety nnd yet you will havo dis asters unless you realise tho great fundamental requirement of Judgment," said P. H. Houlahnn. superintendent of tho Burlington lines In Missouri, to a New York Bun correspondent. "No Invention, however efficient, will take the place of a man with a cool head, who can reason readily and accurately In times when lives are hanging on seconds. Block signals may fail to work, a telegraphic order may have a doubtful meaning, a switch lamp may be turned wrong or a hundred other things may happen to fur nish an excuse for a man to aay, 'It wasn't my fault.' But going down to the bottom o( railroading, you want to Impress upon men who have to do with the running of trains that In their Judgment Is tha real reliance their knowledge of what to do when tho emergency arises. "I am not one of those who believe that men should be retired from active service when they have left 40 or 46 behind. It requires front thirty-five to forty yeara to ripen some Intellects to perfect Judgment. The man of 40 haa generally been tried by fire, and thereafter he avoids the flame. Uke the general on the battlefield, he knows what's best to do. "A young engineer may take chances on a vharp curve or over a yard full of switches. The veteran will begin cutting oft his steam at the proper moment and reduce his speed, making up the time on the next fair stretch. "Brain la a matter of development In railroading as In everything ele. You can't find any mechanical substitute, though you line the track from beginning to end with automatic devices. I'm a friend to every powUble appliance for safety, but I'm a greater believer In a system that rellea upon human agencies aa tho chief safe guard. Uod made man, and man made the Inventions. The MuUrf work is the bet ter." More than 100 trains a day pass over tha Hannibal and Bt. Joseph division of the Burlington. There has not been a serious passenger wreck on that division In twenty yeara, though It la a single track line be tween tU Mlaaouri and tha MisalsdippI rivers. When there was a big crop everybody marketed individually in small lota. Freights were higher on small consign ments nnd tho market was alternately swamped with nn overabundance, or else was left with practically no fruit of soma particular kind. The growers and packers have combined to change this. In tho California deciduous nnd citrous fruit re gions, In the strawberry country, the cran berry marshes, and everywhere, almost, these associations havo been formed. Tho Individuals bring their products to tho Shipping place, from which they are sent out in car lots and placed by the associa tion to the mutual benefit of nil concerned. In this manner the market la kept more even, the commission man and the con sumer know at about what price to expect to find any fruit, and the ordering is sim plified, as there are the few associations to consider where formerly there were the thousands of growers. The associations, through their agents, are In touch with the markets. When nny particular market Is Setting short It la supplied, and, on the Other hand, whero stagnation Is imminent, the supply Is cut oft. In California the growers organized the Southern California Fruit exchange, which handled the fruit for them. Then the puckers, who were making no money, organized the Citrous Fruit union. These two later consolidated as the California Fruit agency. They have resident agents in Omaha and other mar kets. The movement toward organization began about ten years ago. Another change which has come to west ern fruit Jobbing, at least, In ten years is the change from a commission to a caeli basis. Up to that time Omaha fruit men handled at least four-fifths of their busi ness on consignment; now the proportion Is about the same In reverse. The iast still handles largely on consignment. Bal timore fruit houses receive at least 96 per cent of their stocks In this way, making their profit on commissions for sale, and the Chicago fruit trade Is about etiualy divided between the two systems. Th' so eastern houses do not have any silemen on the road and some of them are me -tly auction houses. In the weBt so constant a supply of fruit is not attracted aa In the east and the market would be bare some times If consignments were waited for. More uniform results It Is claimed como through the newer method. Lemons, for example, were hardly shipped from the west ten years ago, but Imported through New York or New Orleans from Sicily and Valencia. Florida also contributed a small portion to the sour beverage. The Califor nia fruits hud not been developed and some species of prunes and plums and other fruit were not then grown. A box of peaches was, though, to be sold cheap at $1.50, while the average price for last sum mer was abect 90 cents. Pears are cheaper now by at least 75 cents a box and o'her things In proportion. California nineteen years ago produced about as good grapes as now Apples then came from Missouri and Canada more than they do now, A great advance haa been made In the fruit grown in this state. This la both In amount and In quality. English walnuts were not grown eighteen yeara ago In California and - the American pineapple did not fully sup ply the market.