Is your kid a chef-in-training? A budding scientist? Or someone who just likes to see where their food comes from? Learn about the delicious inner workings of the food industry with one of these guided factory tours. Visit a local one, or add one of these on during a trip to Bend, the Capital, the Coast, or Ashland.
Franz Bakery. Groups between 10 and 40 people are welcome to see what a working bakery looks like, and how it works! You will learn a bit about Franz bakery, and then take your tour. You can enjoy a snack of bread and butter and juice, plus take home a free sample.
The Details: Franz Bakery offers tours of its bakery from Labor Day until summer break in June. You need to call to schedule your tour by contacting Mary Roane at email@example.com. Children must be 7 years or older to take the tour. Each tour lasts about 30 minutes. 340 NE 11th St., Portland
Creo Chocolate. A tour with a delicious twist! Check out the inner workings of a chocolate maker! A chocolate maker will show you the steps to making chocolate and answer questions. Creo also offers several paid tours, in which you can design and take home your very own chocolate bar! Or take a more intensive, 2-hour informative and interactive introduction to chocolate, in which you can prep, crack and winnow cacao beans.
The Details: Daily tours are free. Paid tours range from $15 to $50. Children must be 8 years or older to take the tour. Length varies based on the tour chosen. You must sign up in advance. 122 NE Broadway, Portland
Bob’s Red Mill. Learn about stone grinding whole grains during this free guided tour of Bob’s Red Mill’s manufacturing facility. You’ll learn about whole grains, then watch a working mill through a viewing window. Attendees will leave with a free sample!
The Details: Tours take place year-round, Monday through Friday at 10 am. Additional 11:30 am tours are available over the summer and on a few other dates. See website for details. Tours last about 75 minutes and are free! 13521 SE Pheasant Ct., Milwaukie
Pacific Hazelnut Farms & Candy Factory. Go nuts with a tour of Pacific Hazelnut Farms. Take a guided 20-40 minute tour, get your questions answered, and enjoy some samples of many of the farm’s products.
The Details: Tours run from January through mid-September. Tours must be scheduled in advance by calling 503-678-2755. Cost is $3, which will be waived with a $6 purchase from the gift shop. 14673 Ottaway Rd NE, Aurora
Goody’s Chocolate and Ice Cream. Experience the tastes of Goody’s chocolate and ice cream. Kids and adults of all ages are welcome to see a working factory where over 100 different kinds of sweet treats are made, including chocolate, fudge, toffee, and ice cream. Can’t you just smell it?
The Details: Self-guided tours are available Monday through Friday from 11 am to 3:45 pm. They are free, and include a free sample of chocolate. For a guided tour, groups of 10 or more must make an appointment 2 weeks in advance. The cost is $2 per person, and includes 6 samples. 1111 SE Division St., Bend.
Tillamook Cheese Factory. No trip to Tillamook is complete without a stop at the cheese factory. Free self-guided tours are available daily. Tillamook is gearing up for a big relaunch of the visitors’ center, but for now there’s a temporary center open. You can learn more about a dairy farm and sample many different kinds of cheese. No actual look at the assembly line though until the new center opens in 2018.
The details: Self-guided tours are free, and include lots and lots of cheese. Open daily from 8 am to 6 pm Labor Day through mid-June; 8 am to 8 pm mid-June through Labor Day. 4175 Highway 101, Tillamook.
Yamasa Soy Sauce. The fermentation of soy sauce is actually a lot like beer making—and you can learn all about it during a 50 minute tour of the international Yamasa Soy Sauce company. Start with a short video, and then move on to tour the vast Salem factory and the huge working machines inside. Expect to take home some treats as well.
The Details: Gather a group and call to secure your reservation. 503-363-8550. 3500 Fairview Industrial Dr. SE, Salem
Harry & David. Yes, the creators of that magical stuff Moose Munch are located in Oregon. And now you can see it being made! Harry & David offers guided tours, where you will learn about the company’s history, and then watch as the culinary team creates baklava, cheese cake, truffles, and yes—Moose Munch. You can also watch the team assemble those yummy gourmet gift towers. You will see big machines at work, and also walk on a wide, sturdy catwalk (beware those with a fear of heights). The tour includes a bakery treat and a chocolate.
The Details: Tickets are $5 per person. You can get your tickets on site, or by calling. Advance reservations are not required, but you may have to wait during busy season. 877-322-8000. 1314 Center Dr. a, Medford OR