SOS site is still mecca of packing

Is there any packing going on at the old SOS packing house? If not, what is going on there?

— Eric J., Phoenix

Yes, there will be another packing season at the historic south Medford production facility along the railroad tracks near the intersection of Stewart Avenue and Highway 99.

The SOS no longer stands for Southern Oregon Sales; it's now Southern Oregon Select. But the actual packing operation is overseen by Naumes Inc., the headquarters of which is a few blocks away.

Jim Wells, controller for Southern Oregon Select Fruit & Vegetable Co., which owns the facility, said the coming harvest will be the third since Naumes leased the packing house."The arrangement has been different every year, but Naumes has been doing something for three years now," Wells said.

When pears start showing up in early fall, the packing operation will employ about 100 people over a three-month period.

The packing house, dating back to 1918, was run as a cooperative by local growers before local trucking operator Mike DeSimone acquired the property for $2.3 million four years ago.

Send questions to "Since You Asked," Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; by fax to 541-776-4376; or by email to We're sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.

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