GirlHacker's Random Log

almost daily since 1999


I love finding stories like this one. Dave Johnson, 73, makes wooden apple boxes. He’s been doing it since he was a kid, back when Washington apple growers actually used the boxes for shipping. Now he’s one of the last commercial wooden apple box makers in the U.S. (a web search turned up this other outfit in Indiana). Johnson has considered retiring but he doesn’t want his craft to die out and business is good. Since apple growers started switching over to cardboard in the late 1950s (because pine for the boxes was becoming scarce), Johnson has supplied crate slats to California vegetable growers and made specialty crates for companies who sell gourmet smoked salmon, sausage, cheese and, yes, apples. He’s currently making 3,000 display crates for the QFC grocery stores. Back in his youth he made about 2 cents per box. Fast workers could nail down the 24 nails in a box in less than a minute and Johnson says he averaged 800 boxes a day.

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