I’m back in town from a delicious jaunt to the Rogue Valley in southern Oregon, and I’ve got all the dirt on one of my favorite holiday gift companies, Harry & David. (You know, the pear people. With all the catalogs?)
convert. And when I met the people behind the products, I became a
friend. There’s Matt, who wakes up at 2AM to light the fires that keep
the pears from freezing–and who also hangs pheromone-dipped ornaments (!!) on the trees so he won’t have to use pesticides. There’s Charlie and
Connie, the duo who took 162 tries to make the exact pink chocolate mix
for the Pink Hand-Dipped Chocolate Pear–and I’ve tried to dip the
pears myself. Trust me, harder than it looks.
passionate for their pears or tender for their truffles, here are six more reasons I’m now officially a H&D convert; not to mention an
explanation for why those pears are so darned expensive.
Research and Development lab is a happy place!” alt=”the Research and
Development lab is a happy place!” align=”right”>1. The people who work there love Harry & David as much as we do
And the factory is possibly the best thing I’ve ever smelled. I recommended they bottle it and sell it as a perfume. Go on a public tour there; it’s so worth it.
I have a crush on their Mild Chorizo, which is available only in the Spanish Tapas Basket. The Moose Munch was a big favorite, especially the Dark Chocolate variety– and it was really fun to see 50 pounds of it on a conveyor belt. The new Gingerbread Petit Fours were enormous– and yet I didn’t want to share them. And as much as I wanted to dig right into the new pre-made Gingerbread House, they said that one was only for display. And several months old.
Still, bookmark it for holiday gifts this year. It’s an awesome idea to knock off a whole household of nieces and nephews with one delivery.
There are plenty of other great ideas under $50, such as my beloved Snowman Tower, which is
$49.95. And I think the phenomenal Martha
Stewart Harvest to Holidays Gift might finally get my mother-in-law
in a good mood, which would be totally worth $134.95.
One caveat: Stay away from the pepper-encrusted sausage. I’m not a fan.
Harry & David also partners with Soldiers’ Angels in the Support Our Troops with Moose Munch program. It may sound silly, but most perishable desserts can’t be mailed into war zones. Soldiers in desert climes love the gooey decadence that occurs when the bars melt, and they’ve sent over 38,000 of them (and plastic spoons!) to U.S. soldiers serving overseas since 2009.
Purchase your own in Harry & David stores in thirty states during May, June, and July, and they will ship them to soldiers with your handwritten note.
The company cares for the environment in many ways, including using recycled packaging for their baskets, eliminating energy waste in offices and factories, and employing sustainable and eco-conscious methods in farming their 725,000 trees. Of course there are a whole lot of boxes that come with those towers (to say nothing of all those catalogs in the mail), but if your kids are like most, they’ll turn those into craft projects and keepsake boxes after the treats are gone.
We also saw organic trees sprayed with clay, propane smudge pots for frost protection, and gorgeous valleys filled with healthy trees and verdant grass. I can’t begin to tell you how good the air smelled in the orchards– crisp, clean, and pure.They also pulled packaging right off the factory floor to show us the post-consumer grades. They’re pretty serious about it.
Thanks to Harry and David for allowing Cool Mom Picks behind the scenes on this press trip.