Today, when you look at Corona-College Heights Orange and Lemon Association’s modern packing facilities, you see the culmination of generations of hard work, experience and expertise in the citrus industry.
Over its long history, CCH has survived several fires, more than a dozen freezes, the Great Depression, two World Wars, about 14 mergers and acquisitions and 100+ years of operating challenges to become one of the world’s largest citrus packing houses.
The Association began in September of 1899 with the meeting of the newly elected board of directors of the Queen Colony Fruit Exchange. In 1905 the name of the association was changed to Corona Citrus Association. In October of 1907, Corona Citrus Association rented the Sunset Fruit Exchange packing house, machinery and tools for the sum of $1,100. In January of 1910, The association purchased Sunset Fruit company, consisting of packing house, machinery, tools and equipment for $9,000.
Over the years the Association grew, merging with other packing houses, and in March of 1939 when the Arlington Heights Fruit Company packing house and contents were completely destroyed by fire, the loss amounted to $166,826. The association survived another fire in December of 1945 which destroyed the packing house and equipment, and the freeze of 1953, when temperatures of 25º caused heavy losses to lemon growers.
In 1964, the Association moved to packing facilities on Indiana Street in Riverside, which had been the Victoria Packing House. In September of 1980, CCH terminated its marketing agreement with Sunkist Growers, Inc. (a relationship which spanned 80 years) and entered into an agreement with Sun World International. In November of 1990, the Association moved into the Arlington Heights Fruit Company plant (our current location).
In February of 1996 our marketing agreement with Sun World expired (a 16 year relationship) and we began marketing our fruit directly. Today our modern packing facilities packed 4.9 million cartons of fruit in the last fiscal year, carrying on the tradition of excellence that began over 100 years ago.