SEE our Historic Packinghouse!
“The Florida Thing to do . . .”
AGRITOURISM UPDATE at AL'S FAMILY FARMS (2020 - Revised 2023-24)
Archive Info from 2020
Covid19- In January of 2020 our Agritourism Tours were abruptly halted as a result of a government imposed, mandatory, Covid lock down order. To comply with legal guidelines we could no longer send groups of people through a structured tour. Sadly our amazing tour guides jobs were immediately affected.
2023 Good News Update- Both former tour guides are doing well. One of them retired from Al's and re-directed her skills to performing incredible volunteer work at a nearby church. The other tour guide was re-assigned to gift basket duties and is now doing a fantastic job of leading our store. Our tour line was shutdown but it has recently been modified and reopened for "self guided" tours. We're busy farmers so please be patient with us as make constant improvements to self-guided tours over time. Although Guided Tours were incredible "the times they are a changing"... Self-Guided Tours ensure we don't place anyone's livelihood in jeopardy again in the event of another unforseen, tour suspension. More Good News- Our Packinghouse, Store, Grill, O.J. Corral and Observation Groves are back open to the public.
Added Covid Precautions: In 2020 we added some additional safety measures throughout our operations. Here are just a few examples:
1) FREE JUICE & FRUIT samples are happily provided by an attendant upon request. As of April 2023 we have just begun to offer limited, unattended samples more frequently. We are still maintaining the highest safety standards possible so No Fingers Please! (Use the toothpicks provided!) We still encourage "the most at risk" customers to shop near the time the store opens as it is typically less crowded then. At that time our staff can better assist in anyway necessary. We'll even shop for you and help carry items to your car whenever possible.
Revised as of 2023
2) New SELF GUIDED TOURS (Recently Opened, Mid-Nov - April)
Our citrus washline "wetline" is located under the giant pole barn along the canal. All the machinery has been numbered and labeled as to it's function and you are welcome to use the staircases and platforms we've built for a better view from above.
(Warning- You'll be walking over grass and climbing steps so please wear appropriate shoes).
Proceed across the lawn at the bottom of the front porch steps and head westward along the canal until you reach the end at the far west staircase and platform. ( #1 Main Fruit Dump/Pre-Grader's platform). Climb those steps and you will see where the 900 lb. field bins of citrus are dumped onto the wetline. Now turn back eastward walking down those stairs and you will see the Cannery line's conveyer elevator. Above you is our Pre-sizer. Next is the Sanitizer roller spreader, then the Fruit washer with it's 54 scrubber brushes. Our Mid-grader's line is next under the lights, then it's off to the Fruit Polisher drying tunnel. You will see the fruit re-emerge at the end of the Fruit Polisher tunnel as it drops onto the north crossbelt and then west toward the Waxer. From the waxer the fruit enters the Final Drying Tunnel and emerging at the Final Grader's roller spreader. This is the fruit's final grading phase before entering the Master Fruit Sizer where it will be automaticallys separated by size into plastic fruit bins.
Tour Tip- During the busy, main citrus season we often run the prior day's citrus harvest in the morning around 9 a.m. (If you are lucky enough to hear the bell ring, that's your cue.)
Ending 15+years of guided tours due to Covid in favor of self-guided tours was good for "social distancing" and it reduced public criticism, but we sure do miss our beloved and knowlegeable tour guides. They poured enthusiam, excitement and passion into every guided tour. Save your questions, our store crew may surprise you with the answer.
4) OBSERVATION GROVES The USDA's and other observation citrus trees are planted in the little grove at the north end of the Agri-playground. That is located directly north of the Red Barn Grill Restaurant. The newly redone, "single bedded" grove has recently undergone a full restoration. It's amazing "Dodgertown" soil was purchased and re-located from the outfield of Holman Stadium in Vero Beach. That's the legendary spring training facility where the Brooklyn & Los Angeles Dodgers played from 1948 - 2008. That Dodgertown field's soil is now in the proccess of being replanted with the top 22 trees resulting from our two decades of Citrus trial testing with the USDA both here and in our leased groves.
Thank you and may God bless you with the gift of health,
The Schorner Family
Welcome to Al’s Family Farms Citrus Wet-line and Packinghouse and store! We are located in the famous Indian River Citrus Growing District in our historic red barn packinghouse. You may tour the machinery where we wash, sanitize and pack Florida's famous, Indian River Citrus to ship to your freezin’ friends up north! Be sure and visit - "The O.J. Corral" and our Agritourism Observation grove located beside the Al's Red Barn Grill! You will see mainly citrus trees. We also have banana and papaya trees.
- “The O.J. Corral” is OPEN during Red Barn Grill hours and by request. Play with Ole’ fashioned farm style pumps, a putt putt golf hole and other fun things to do.
- Take a walk through our small, Citrus Observation Grove!
Directions to Al's Family Farms
Next time you’re in Florida, we hope you’ll come see us! We’re just a mile and a half off of I-95, between West Palm Beach and Vero Beach on the Treasure Coast!
Al’s Family Farms
2001 N King’s Hwy
Fort Pierce, FL 34951