After finishing the 2017-18 citrus season at just 45 million boxes of oranges, Florida growers were pleased to hear that the initial orange forecast from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for the 2018-19 season is 79 million boxes.
Non-Valencia oranges came at in 34 million boxes, while Valencias are expected to be 45 million boxes. Bill Curtis, USDA agricultural statistics administrator, reported smaller fruit size, but more fruit per tree.
The forecast for all-Florida grapefruit is 6.7 million boxes — 1.2 million boxes of white and 5.5 million boxes of red. Tangerines and tangelos in Florida are predicted to be 1.2 million boxes.
“It’s been a very difficult year for growers no doubt, and it’s good to hear production for this season is expected to be up,” said Michael W. Sparks, executive vice president/chief executive officer of Florida Citrus Mutual. “Growers continue to show resilience and a commitment to replant and get the industry back on its feet. But we still have significant work to do to increase production back to a point where we can support infrastructure and generate the income necessary to keep growers in business. I am optimistic the 2018-19 season is the beginning, and we will get the Florida citrus industry back to sustainability.”
See the USDA citrus forecast report here.
Hear the forecast:
Mark your calendar for the next citrus crop forecast at noon on Nov. 8, 2018.
Coverage of the citrus crop forecast is brought to you by:
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