by Jenna Richardson
Mileur’s Orchard has been a family owned farm since the 1960’s.
Howard and Lisa Mileur have been owners of Mileur’s Orchard since 1996. This orchard was planted by Howard’s parents in 1961 and has been in the family ever since. Mileur’s Orchard is located several miles just west of Murphysboro on Highway 149.
The orchard is known for quality, and when you buy from Mileur’s Orchard, you’re buying directly from the person who grew it.
“We want people to come back so we try to keep them happy and give them the best fruit we can,” Lisa said, “I think they come out here for freshness and our taste is a little bit better.”
The apples at Mileur’s Orchard are picked riper than apples sold in grocery stores, and they also don’t have to be stored or shipped
Apples sold in grocery stores have been picked in the fall of the year if they’re grown within the United States, “so when you buy an apple in May or June, it’s last fall’s apple,” Lisa said.
The apples have been stored and brought out of cold storage from a warehouse and sent to the various grocery store chains. Lisa comments about their storage, “we store in our cooler, but it’s right here. It’s not getting shipped anywhere.”
Mileur’s Orchard not only sells fresh fruit that hasn’t gone through the long process of shipping, but they also do their best not to sell anything that isn’t their top quality. The apples go through a process before being sold. They are dumped onto the packing line, get brushed, scrubbed with sponges, polished, and then sorted. Workers take the washed apples and pick out the bruised or rotten ones.
In addition to apples, Mileur’s Orchard grows peaches, nectarines, white peaches, white nectarines, apricots, plums and pears.