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EDUCATION. Now as to some particular suggestion as to what you gentlemen can do-I see very little that the consumer can do at this time. There has got to be a campaign of eclucation. A great many know that an apple is an apple, and that is all. Now you can all engage in a campaign of education among consumers and finally educate them up to the point where they know what they want. You can also take the groceryman. And I would suggest that you begin here and now a close co-operation with every kindred organization. Take the Western Fruit Jobbers' Association, the National League, the Retail Grocers' Association, the State Horticultural Societies, and organize a campaign of education aimed at the grocer, 50 that he will demand United States Standard pack.
EVILS OF THE OLD WAY. I would say that in my opinion the mere fact of calling one apple a No. 1 and another a No. 2 has worked a great hardship upon the apple dealer and the apple industry. Now this is what happens in the orchard, as all of you know. We run the apples over a table and the No. 1's go into one barrel and the No. 2's into another. The No. I's are supposed to be free from worms, scab, scale and other defects. Then there is another barrel called the No. 2. This also is supposed to have nothing in it but sound fruit, of the same grade as the No. 1, but a little smaller in size. The mere fact of calling it a No.2 induces the men who sort to put apples into that barrel which ought never to go in. They put wormy apples in the No. 2's and say “O, that's all right, that apple has only a sting or is a little scaly.” The effect is all the time to lower the grade of the No. 2 apple.
Now the Sulzer Bill has not a No. 2 apple in it. There is but one grade. Bear that in mind. The only clifference is in the size. Any apple buyer who goes into an orchard this fall and undertakes to buy No. I and No. 2 apples will deserve all he gets, because he ought not to buy anything but the No. 1 Apples. Under this bill you can buy apples down to two inches and from two and a half inches up, and that is more than enough lee-way for any person. The old idea of No. I's and No. 2's should be done away with. The terms mean nothing.
THE DEALER'S RESPONSIBILITY. Perhaps I am trying to talk in an educational manner to gentlemen who are graduates in the apple business, but the fact is that the grower is not so much to blame for a bad pack as the dealer. All the dealers do not belong to the International Apple Shippers' Association, so if I tell you that the dealer is responsible for more bad packing than the grower, that does not necessarily mean any member of this Association is included, because there are thousands of apple dealers in the country and not all of them belong to your organization. I presume the best dealers do, but' it is the thousands of people who do not but who deal in apples, some this year and some next year; those are the men who have been doing injury tu the business. They have only a twelve months' standing at stake and, perhaps, will be in the apple business this year and unknown next, or, i perhaps, they will be handling peaches the next and in the penitentiary the next.
Those are the ones who are responsible for a large part of the bal} pack. Of course the grower wants the best he can get out of his cron. but it is my observation that the grower is willing to give the buyer ? ! square deal and our growers, many of them, insist on putting their own names on the barrels, because they think it an advertisement for them and their fruit.
BUYING BY THE LUMP. There is another thing that occurs to me at this time that I think is á ! bad practice. I may have mentioned this to some of you before. There is a habit among some of you gentlemen, perlaps not members of this Association, to buy orchards in a lump sum. That seems a bad practice ! all around. It is bad because it encourages you to put up bad fruit. If you pay $15,000 for an orchard in August and the fruit does not dez'clop like it should, and you find you are up against a tough proposition, you are bound to put in apples that you should not.
Another practice that is bad: A buyer goes into a locality and buus by the lump. He is unacquainted with the conditions and does not know where to get the pickers and packers. Ile has to get his fruit off the tree and have it packed and get away; he cannot wait. Where there are three or four or half a dozen buyers in a community buying orchards by the lump, they disorganize the whole labor situation of a community an! create dissatisfaction between the buver and the grower. On more than one occasion I have taken the opportunity to suggest that, so far as possible, it is cheapest to buy the apples by the barrel and in accordance avith the provisions of the Sulser Bill.
Experiences From Life
Reminiscences By C. C. Bell, Boonville, Mo. My first apples I loaded on the 18th of October, 1869, and let me tell l'ou what I did with them. I hope none of you will follow that example. I was undertaking to ship them to the Pike's Peak country. The nearest railroad was Cheyenne, Wyoming. I had to ship by boat to Omaha, then
by the Union Pacific and finally by mule team 275 miles up in the mountains. I shipped that car from Boonville to Omaha and when I got to Omaha a blizzard came up and I was afraid to ship, as I had nothing but a common box car to load them in. As soon as the weather cleared up I got them under way and went on ahead. At Cheyenne they loaded them on the mule teams for Central City, Colorado, where apples were retailing at 30 cents a pound. My partner, a member of my company during the war, who was selling the apples, and I went there and we waited and waited, and on the 14th day of December our apples finally arrived. The freight on that carload of apples was $1,540 and we had only about $800 in the bank. When we unloaded those apples they were frozen harder than buillets. My partner said, “Charlie, we are broke.” I said, “I know we are,” but I said, “Keep a stiff upper lip, because we have to borrow some money to pay this freight and I don't know where we are going to borrow it, for just as soon as that freight is unloaded, they will want their money.” So I went up to Kountz Bros., the bankers there, and the same firm who are now in New York. I saw the President. He said, “What have you got?" I told him that we had a carload of apples and that we needed the money to get them and pay the freight. He said, “I understand that the apples are frozen.” I said, “That is right, they are." And he then said, “In that case I can't advance you any money on them."
I went to the Rocky Mountain Bank and they told me the same thing. Finally the cashier of the Kountz Bank came to me and said, “I understand you have some apples here and that they were raised in Pike County, Mo. What kind of apples are these, are they Genitons?" And I said, “Yes." He said that in that case he did not think they would be a loss but could be sold. I answered, "I know it, but I could not make your President believe that.”
He said, "What per cent. of interest will you give me for the money to pay the freight; can you pay me 5 per cent. a month till you sell them?" I said, “I will pay you anything if I can just get those apples out." He said, "All right, I will go and look at them—do you know how to handle them?" I said, “I certainly do, if I can just pay the freight and get the apples." He let me have the money an 1 I paid the freight. There were 128 barrels of that carload that were Genitons.
Now, right back of our store was a drift in the side of the hill where someone had dug for gold and I said to my partner, “That is the place for us to put those apples. If we put them in there, they will thaw out gradually and we will sell apples here all winter.” We did just that. Occasionally we would dig out a barrel. Some of them would turn black, but we made a trough out of a pine log and the black apples we made into cider and sold it at fifteen cents a glass. The good apples we sold at thirty cents a pound and in thirty days we paid that money back and made a profit besides. That was my first experience with a carload of apples. I and I don't want any more of it.
From there I went to Texas. I quit the apple business after that experience for about five years and sold groceries. Finally I again decided to try my hand at it. I wired up to Boonville and asked my brother to buy five hundred barrels and ship them down the Mississippi River by boat to ! Austin, Texas, at which point I wished them deliverd. After going down the river they had to cross the Gulf and then be carried by mule team the last seventy-five miles. However, there was a very good demand there and I thought it was worth a trial.
Here is where I made my mistake. Vy apples were shipped, and the next thing that I knew of them was when I received a wire from the transportation people saying, “Your apples have arrived but they are leaking.” I knew what that meant. As a salesman I had saved a little money, but not enough to pay freight on five hundred barrels of apples when it cost as much as it did then. So I wired back to sell them for what they could get. When I got through with that experience I was nine hundred and eighty-one dollars out of pocket, or rather I should say, that much in debt.
This address will appear in full in the Year Book.
A Strong Recommendation -- Excellent Advice
Read This--It Is Important "We strongly recommend that copies of the Sulzer Bill be printed and mailed to every member of this Association, the horticultural societies, growers and consumers, and that a campaign of education be inaugurated to induce every one to act under it, as recommended in the President's address. This we regard of the highest importance and absolutely necessary if we are to get legitimate results from the splendid campaign for the enactment of the law.
“We also recommend that a form of contract containing the provisions of the Sulzer Bill or based upon the provisions of the Sulzer Bill be prepared and recommended to all members of this Association for lise in the coming year's business, under the further recommendation that all members of this Association be requested to use no form of contract that provides for buying in the lump, as we believe such practice puts a premium on faulty packing and is responsible for a large part of the misfortunes that befall the apple packer. Your committee belictes that the
practice of buying everything on the tree to be equally unwise and disastrous. We believe that right methods of buying are essential to right methods of packing, and we believe that a form of pledge should be made to which the assent and signature of all members should be asked, formally requiring that no member signing shall buy in either of the above mentioned ways and that the Secretary be asked to send such form of pledge to each member and ask his signature thereon."
Act Under the Sulzer Bill--Be Consistent From Discussion by William L. Wagner at the Chicago Convention
Mr. Chairman, I have been impressed very much during the past five years of labor on legislative matters with the fact that while the members of this organization and all other organizations show a tremendous amount of interest in matters of legislation, there has been altogether too much inconsistency.
Someone, I think, has said that if a thing is worth doing at all, it is worth doing well. Rather than do it half-way, do not do it at all. We should never enter into anything in a legislative way without being so imbued with the spirit of the thing that we are willing to govern our own acts by that spirit. I want to tell you, gentlemen, that it is a mighty embarrassing thing when you have gone before a Congressional Committee and have laid down a strong argument, as we did against the short barrel—the Virginia barrel—to have some one of that Committee say to you: “Why, haven't members of your organization gone into Virginia and paid, not only for them, but paid a premium for short barrels? Aren't there members of your Committee who have gone down there and paid a premium for short barrels ?" It is embarrassing--mighty embarrassing to have to reply in the affirmative.
You can never convince anyone of anything that you may desire to convince them of, unless you live the part yourself. What use would there be for your President to urge you to attend this Association meeting and to be here promptly on time, if he himself were absent? Why, in the name of Heaven, did we get busy last year and assist the good people of New York State in having a law passed in that State for the standardization of the barrel, and yet not buy one barrel of apples under the measure? There wasn't one contract, as near as I can learn, in conformity with their State law.
We have gone ahead now and have passed the Sulzer Bill and made it a National Law, and are we now going to sit down and be content? The Sulzer Bill was founded upon a principle, and that principle is only the foundation, and the foundation is only laid when we have made the law.