Meyer Orchards in Talent goes bankrupt after 111 years

TALENT, Ore – A family-owned pear orchard will close after 111 years in the Rogue Valley.

Meyer Orchards in Talent told NBC5 that its closure was due to rising labor costs/federal spending, as well as foreign competition keeping pear prices low.

She cut the trees on Friday afternoon and has already sold some of her land.

“Things have changed in the last five years, and we haven’t made money on pears,” said Ron Meyer, owner of Meyer Orchards. “We just couldn’t sell enough pears to make a profit so we decided to do something different,”

The severe drought of recent years has also contributed to the pressure on the company. The family began discussing closure options, following the Talent Irrigation District’s decision to shut off the water in July.

Even if the valley gets enough water next season, the family says the trees might not bear fruit due to this year’s drought.

RELATED: Talent irrigation district closes due to drought

Kirt Meyer, general manager of Meyer Orchards, told NBC5 that he thinks there may not be pears growing in Rogue Valley.

“This industry has suffered financially for decades for a variety of reasons,” Kirt wrote in a Facebook post. “The H-2A program is currently the only way to get crops picked. It is very expensive, complicated and highly regulated. These types of farms do not receive government subsidies…The financial burden therefore rests solely with the farmer.

Although the business is no longer there, Ron says he plans to stay on the property and is grateful for the community support over the years.

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