Florida Citrus Forecast

Florida Citrus Forecast

Maura Bennett
Maura Bennett

As we earlier reported….

Crawford: “The USDA is projecting a 12% smaller orange crop this season.”

That’s Gary Crawford with the USDA news service.

While the orange crop is down 12% nationwide, Florida’s citrus industry is forecast to have one of the lowest production years in decades.

The state’s producers continue to battle the spread of citrus greening and other issues.

In the first estimates for the 2021-2022 growing season, the U.S. Department of Agriculture forecast a nearly 11% drop in orange production and a 7.3% reduction in grapefruit production from the past season. Harvest totals would be among the smallest since the 1940s.

Florida Department of Citrus Executive Director Shannon Shepp said in a statement that they had, “ hoped for more” adding that more than 90% of Florida’s orange crop is being squeezed for juice.

Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried said the state remains committed to supporting growers through “research, technology, and techniques to fight the spread of citrus greening.”

The initial federal forecast has Florida growers producing enough oranges to fill 47 million 90-pound boxes. That is down from about 52.8 million boxes during the 2020-2021 growing season.

In recent years, the only season with fewer than 47 million boxes of oranges was the 2017-2018 season, the year Hurricane Irma blew through. That year, Florida had about 45 million boxes of oranges.

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