In this post, a look at two distinctive fruit crate labels.
“Don’t Worry” Apples Fruit Crate Label
I doubt that “Don’t Worry” brand apples would be a successful brand today. It’s easy for me to come up with a bushel of worrisome questions when choosing your food. Organic? Local? What pesticides? Imported? In season? By buying the trendy Honeycrisp, am I dooming heirloom varieties? Do they still use alar? Or how about the use of arsenic and lead as pesticides (in the distant past)?
The Omnivore’s Guilt Trip at New York Magazine takes a good look at some of the troubles one can face.
Berkeley Apricots Fruit Crate Label
As a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, I find this label exciting. Sure, the proportions of Sather Tower aren’t quite right, and the artist removed tower’s surroundings to put it in a pasture, but it’s advertising, not a documentary. Reading the label, however, brings slightly different feelings: “Below U.S. Standard…Not High Grade.” Perhaps whoever decided that Berkeley apricots would be “not high grade” was a Stanford graduate? (As far as I know, Berkeley never had commercial apricot orchards, or any other large scale agricultural endeavors. There were famous apricot orchards at the southern end of San Francisco Bay in Santa Clara County.)
Don’t Worry brand fruit crate label and Berkeley Apricots fruit crate label from the California Historical Society’s Flickr Commons Collection, no known copyright restrictions. The California Historical Society’s collection “comprises thousands of crate, can, and bottle labels, the bulk of which were designed and created between the 1920s and 1940s by San Francisco and Los Angeles lithography companies”