To see how personally we take quality, look no further than the footprints in our fields. They are made by farmers monitoring the crop all season, gathering data and making adjustments accordingly. Footprints® is Yakima Chief Ranches’ (YCR) comprehensive brand management program of standards and practices that ensure our hops are grown and harvested with the highest levels of consistency, purity and excellence.
As the name suggests, Footprints® is a program that reminds us of the importance of the ground we walk on, plant in and rely upon to sustain and grow our business. Each year, we walk thousands of acres to improve varietal purity and quality, working tirelessly with growers to make sure Yakima Chief Hops (and by extension, brewers) can be confident that they are receiving a unique, quality beer ingredient.
Bruce, Bill and Charlie Davidson are the proud owners and fourth generation hop farmers of 3D Farm and BC Hop Farm Ltd. Their family farming operations began in the 1940s when their father, Jim Davidson, purchased 100 acres of farmland in the Willamette Valley and planted 10 acres of hops, all of which had to be hand-picked. In 1975, Jim purchased the first Dauenhauer picking machine along with three dryers and a Gasseling layer and baler. Working alongside their father, the three brothers purchased the farm in 1983 and continued to expand operations. In 1995, 3D Farm expanded to its current facility with two Dauenhauer machines, seven dryers, and a dedicated cooling and baling room. They have now expanded their production to more than 600 acres and nine varieties.
The Davidsons embrace sustainability and contribute to the hop industry’s environmental preservation efforts by utilizing solar panels as a renewable energy source. They also operate a grinder used to process hop plant waste created throughout the harvest season, which is then returned to the hop yards as compost. Outside of the fields, Charlie has served on the Board of Directors for Hop Growers of America and the Oregon Hop Commission.