Earl Peterson, a fourth generation fruit grower, purchased his first farm in 1972 and has continued to acquire acreage in Michigan’s Oceana County throughout the years. Peterson Farms, Inc. was established in 1984 as a secure home for Earl’s tart cherry tonnage of 250,000 lbs. The business volume grew quickly when in 1985 Earl processed tart cherries for two surrounding neighbors as well as his own.
Due to the demands of customers to reduce the presence of pits in tart cherries, Earl and a friend, Bob Nedow, established Cherry Technologies in 1989. Cherry Technologies holds the patent rights on electronic detection of pits in processed cherries.
The family owned business continued to grow rapidly as Earl focused his belief of “listening to your customer while providing the highest quality product” to the processing of other commodities such as asparagus, apples, sweet cherries, blueberries and peaches. Today, Peterson Farms is a marketing leader of frozen fruits in the United States, marketing over 150 million finished pounds of frozen fruits and 7 million gallons of single strength apple juice/cider and juice concentrates.
Peterson Farms Fresh, Inc. was established in 2004 as a state of the art fresh-cut fruit processing company. Today, we are one of the leading processors of fresh-cut apples in the United States.
Top row left to right: Earl’s father, LeRoy (middle), Earl examining cherries. Bottom row: Earl’s father, LeRoy, Earl on tractor.