Tree Top History
Located in the heart of Washington’s apple country in Selah, WA, Tree Top is committed to our co-op’s small town roots and rural values. Hardworking and caring growers and employees are what make Tree Top special. Since 1960, we’ve been bringing you products and ingredients that reflect our passion, our attention to quality, and our craftsmanship.
Over a half a century ago Bill Charbonneau, his wife and two sons moved to the Yakima Valley from southern California. He purchased a small apple processing plant on Produce Row in Selah, Washington, and set about developing a quality brand of apple juice. Once he perfected his clear, premium juice, Mr. Charbonneau held a contest among his employees to choose a brand name for his product, and the winning entry was "Tree Top." It was widely believed in those days that the very best quality fruit grew at the top of the trees.
Mr. Charbonneau was a stickler about the quality and taste of his juice. His office was located within the juicing facility so he could personally oversee its making. Apples were pressed and the juice stored in 5,000 gallon holding tanks. Every time a batch of apples was pressed, a sample was brought to Mr. Charbonneau to taste. If the juice did not meet his approval, the entire 5,000 gallon tank would be poured down the drain.
In 1960, a group of local apple growers decided to form a cooperative and purchase Mr. Charbonneau’s company and the Tree Top brand to ensure they had a solid market for their apples. Mr. Charbonneau’s discriminating quality standards are still prevalent in our culture and we’re just as picky about the fruit products and ingredients we put our name on. Today, Tree Top maintains the only trained taste panel in the apple juice industry.
While our expertise in fruit grew over the last half century as we learned how to turn fresh fruit into healthful products and ingredients, so did our company and our reputation. Tree Top is still a grower-owned agricultural cooperative. Our grower’s orchards are scattered throughout the fertile growing regions in Washington, Oregon and Idaho, however we now operate seven facilities on the west coast close to where the fruit is harvested. These seven plants are capable of producing world famous Tree Top brand juices and the widest range of processed fruit products of superior quality.
Two of our plants specialize in dried apple products, and Tree Top has become the largest supplier of dried apple products in the world. Dried fruits are mainly for ingredient use, and Tree Top's dried and low moisture apples find their way into the nation's top brands of cereals, breakfast pastries, cake mixes, snacks, etc.
Tree Top Fresh Apple Slices® made their debut in 2001 and in 2006 a state-of-the-art processing facility was constructed on the Selah campus to handle the booming business of providing sliced apple snacks to the food service industry.
Regardless of whether we’re producing strawberry or peach puree, dried apples, premium 3 Apple Blend juice, or one of hundreds of other fruit ingredients or products, our dedication to quality and craftsmanship is the key ingredient.
We’re humbly honored to now be recognized as a pacesetter in the fruit-processing industry and a premium brand that offers value to our customers.
We are just real people producing healthful fruit products and ingredients that we’re pleased to have our own families enjoy. Thanks for taking the time to learn about our story and for allowing us to share the fruits of our labor with you.
Since 1960, we’ve been bringing you products that reflect our passion, our attention to quality, and our craftsmanship. We put as much care and dedication as possible into our fruit and our products. We take pride in our brand, and that’s what our tagline is all about: Real Fruit from Real People.
Tree Top brings you purity and healthfulness in everything we make. Our apple juice and cider remain the backbone of our product offerings, but we also make a variety of blended fruit juices. In addition, we offer a wide range of apple sauce available in organic and flavored sauces, as well as an entire line of juice-sweetened apple sauce.
Today, Tree Top is the world's largest producer of dried apple products and the primary supplier to the U.S. market, providing food ingredients to over 20 of the nation's top 25 food companies. A key element of the growth of our business has been our superior technical support capabilities. Our experienced scientists and food technologists are readily available to work with customers on the development of new products and unique applications.
Whatever your specific needs, from research through development of new products, we're ready to provide you with innovative ideas, support, prototypes, packaging alternatives, and, of course, the world's juiciest, tastiest, and most delicious apple and fruit products.
Turn the Ordinary into the Extraordinary. Rather than reacting to the market, Tree Top pioneers new ideas. From its inception, Tree Top has been an innovative leader in the development of premium products and packaging. From fresh-cut produce to apple sauce and fruit juices, we are the trendsetters of new, healthy products. With a state-of-the-art research and development facility, research chefs and creative technicians at our disposal, we can bring unique and innovative ideas to the table. Our knowledgeable Foodservice sales team tracks the most current food and health trends, and works within both the regional and national scopes of the foodservice industry. From school districts to dining and healthcare, Tree Top has the ability to turn your menu from ordinary into extraordinary.
Northwest Naturals LLC., a wholly-owned subsidiary, is located near the heart of Seattle. Northwest Naturals is recognized as one of the industry leaders in the production of specialty blended, all natural, fruit juice concentrates, WONF concentrates, and frozen dairy-style bases, essences, and other value added fruit products.
In 2008, Tree Top purchased the Sabroso Company headquartered in Medford, Oregon, with additional processing facilities in Woodburn, Oregon, and Oxnard, California. The Sabroso brand is synonymous with the highest quality fruit purees, soft fruit applications, and innovative fruit ingredients. The Sabroso tradition and commitment to high quality, innovation, and excellent customer service continues as we supply the world’s premier food companies with delicious fruit-based products and global supply chain services.