Grower: Ellis Hunt
Company: Hunt Brothers
Location: Lake Wales, Florida
I have just landed in Florida to learn more about how orange juice is made. My first stop on my adventures was the Hunt Brother's Orange Groves and Packinghouse in Lake Wales. This family-owned business has been growing and packing oranges for almost 90 years!
I was welcomed by Ellis Hunt to his family's grove to see how their family has been planting orange, tangerine and grapefruit trees. After looking and picking some fresh tangerines, I toured the packinghouse! The packinghouse is where the fresh fruit is sorted, cleaned and sent to grocery stores all over the country.
After my first adventure, I had a few more questions for Mr. Hunt.
Capt. C: What type of jobs have you done at Hunt Brothers?
Ellis Hunt: Since the age of 14, I have worked for the family business. Through the years I have done everything from repairing irrigation (sprinklers), hand loading 18 wheelers (semi-trucks), driving tractors, picking oranges, building boxes and repairing engines and equipment in the shop.
Capt. C: How do you get YOUR creative juices flowing?
Ellis Hunt: Growing up, my family was very musical. My grandmother and mother both played piano. We all loved to play and listen to music. I currently sing and play guitar in a band, Junior & the MDs (The Dr's of Rock). My daughter Maggie, 14, also loves to sing and act in local performances.
Capt. C: What is one fun thing you learned while working?
Ellis Hunt: When I worked in the repair shop, I learned a lot about repairing engines and cars. This fueled my love of cars and, as a young adult, I raced Corvettes and Porsches at the “24hrs of Sebring” and at the “Daytona Speedway.”
What a great visit!
If you want to learn more about Hunt Brothers, you can visit:
That's all for now – look for more of my adventures soon!