Martin Named New California CRB President

Len WilcoxIndustry News Release

Marcy L. Martin was named the new president of the Citrus Research Board (CRB). The appointment was announced by CRB Chairman Dan Dreyer, who said that Martin was selected after a nearly year-long national search for the best candidate to lead the organization. Martin joins the CRB with more than 25 years of experience with California commodity organizations. She most … Read More

IMG Citrus Invests in Packinghouse

Daniel CooperIndustry News Release, Technology

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IMG Citrus, a family-owned, vertically integrated citrus grower, packer and shipper in Vero Beach, Florida, has invested $1.5 million into its packinghouse processing line. The company added a state-of-the-art electronic fruit grader, the Global Scan 7, manufactured in France. The new sorter has the ability to precisely capture 120 images per fruit and up to 120 fruit per second in … Read More

Citrus Research Facility Opening Set

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner, Research

Sept. 26 will be the official opening day for a new bio-safety citrus research facility at the University of California, Riverside (UCR). A ribbon-cutting ceremony and other activities are scheduled to highlight the day. Members of the California Citrus Research Foundation, California Citrus Mutual (CCM) and the Citrus Research Board will be in attendance. The facility was funded by California … Read More

Payne Picked for 2019 Florida 500 List

Tacy CalliesAwards, Industry News Release

Jack Payne, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) senior vice president of agriculture and natural resources, earned a spot on this year’s Florida 500, Florida Trend Magazine’s second annual list of the state’s most influential business leaders. Eighteen agricultural sector leaders made the list. “My recognition is really a reflection of UF/IFAS as a whole,” Payne … Read More

Sugar Belle® Shows Potential in Orange Juice Processing

Tacy CalliesResearch

By Yu Wang, Charles Sims, Zhifeng Gao, Lisa House, Frederick Gmitter and Jude Grosser The citrus industry has faced significant declines in both production and consumption during the huanglongbing (HLB) era. For example, Florida orange production has dropped about 70 percent over the last two decades. In the absence of effective interventions, the spread of HLB will continue to reduce the … Read More

Cloud-Based Software Helps Farmers on the Ground

Daniel CooperIndustry News Release, Technology

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A University of Florida agricultural engineer has developed software that can help farmers find the best places to plant crops and to identify fruit and vegetable varieties that perform better against diseases. Now, Yiannis Ampatzidis is leading an effort to refine the software so it can help growers even more. To help farmers protect and even increase their harvests, Ampatzidis, … Read More

Research on Shade Benefits and Growing Better Bingo

Ernie NeffCitrus, Research

Money provided by the Florida Legislature allows research into the positive impact of shade on trees, Bingo tree dieback and additional areas not funded by other sources. “The University of Florida (UF) each year gets legislative appropriations from the state, and these are Citrus Initiative legislative funds,” says Michael Rogers, director of the Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC). The … Read More

Food Safety Compliance for Fresh Citrus

Ernie NeffFood Safety

Information about complying with the federal Food Safety Modernization Act’s Produce Safety Rule was presented at the recent annual Citrus Packinghouse Day. Scott McClure, environmental manager for the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Division of Fruit & Vegetables (FDACS/DFV), was one of the presenters. He summarizes his talk. McClure says the rule applies to “anyone that handles, grows, … Read More

Congressman Yoho Introduces Ag Guest Worker Bill

Tacy CalliesLabor, Legislative

As labor continues to be a top-priority issue for producers nationwide, Congressman Ted Yoho is aiming to lessen worries of a labor shortage by introducing a new ag guest worker bill. He discussed this new bill in a recent exclusive interview with AgNet Media’s Abbey Taylor. According to Yoho, the bill shies away from immigration and focuses solely on ensuring … Read More

USDA Citrus Fruits 2019 Summary

Daniel CooperIndustry News Release, Production

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Florida’s 2018–2019 orange production is up 59 percent from the previous season. Citrus utilized production for the 2018–19 season totaled 7.94 million tons, up 31 percent from the 2017–18 season. California accounted for 51 percent of total U.S. citrus production; Florida totaled 44 percent, and Texas and Arizona produced the remaining 5 percent. Florida’s orange production, at 71.8 million boxes, … Read More

Futuristic Control of Psyllids

Ernie NeffPsyllids

Two University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences faculty discussed research that might offer future weapons in the fight against HLB-spreading Asian citrus psyllids (ACP). Both scientists made presentations at the recent Citrus Expo. Bt toxins, which come from a bacterium, have been used to control pests in corn and cotton, said Bryony Bonning. “They don’t work terribly … Read More

Dumping of Brazilian and Mexican Juice Causes Southern Gardens to Cease Processing Citrus

Tacy CalliesProcessing

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A flood of foreign imported orange juice was the deciding factor. Southern Gardens Citrus Processing Corporation announced today that it will no longer process fruit at its facility in Hendry County, Florida.  Beginning with the 2019-20 season, Southern Gardens will have its fruit processed at another facility and bring that juice back to its facility in Hendry County for storage … Read More

IPCs Effective Against Psyllids and HLB

Ernie NeffHLB Management, Pests, Psyllids

citrus

Long-time multi-county citrus Extension agent Mongi Zekri, who serves Southwest Florida counties, says individual protective covers (IPCs) work well in the fight against citrus greening, also known as HLB. “They have been very effective in controlling or managing citrus greening, because they don’t allow the citrus psyllid, which is the vector of the disease, to get to the tree,” Zekri … Read More

Seeking Future Florida Citrus Growers

Tacy CalliesScholarship

By Tacy Callies The citrus and horticultural science major offered by Florida Southern College made the list in a recent article titled “The Strangest College Majors That Exist Today.” The article, published at cheatsheet.com, included other majors like nautical archeology, cannabis cultivation, pop culture, Canadian studies and comic art. Perhaps the citrus and horticultural science major seems strange to some … Read More

Citrus Expo Presentations Now Available

Tacy CalliesCitrus Expo

The 28th annual Citrus Expo saw great success as growers piled into the Lee Civic Center on Aug. 14–15 in North Fort Myers, Florida. Growers experienced a dynamic trade show and a new hands-on session. The seminar program, titled “Growing Stronger,” featured presentations on the latest research from the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS). Many … Read More

Agent Reports on Crop Conditions and Planting

Ernie Neffcrop, planting

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After announcing at the August meeting of the Citrus Research and Development Foundation that the 2019–20 Florida Citrus Production Guide is now available, multi-county citrus Extension agent Chris Oswalt talked about tree and crop conditions. He summarizes his presentation in an interview. “After all the rainfall we’ve had, and we’ve had quite a bit of good rainfall this past month … Read More

Crop Insurance Listening Sessions for Citrus Growers

Daniel Coopercrop insurance

citrus growers

Agralytica of Alexandria, Virginia, is gathering feedback on federal crop insurance revenue coverage options for citrus growers on behalf of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency (RMA). As part of the review, Agralytica staff will hold listening sessions with growers, insurance staff and other interested parties to obtain comments on crop insurance policy options. In Florida, sessions will … Read More

CRAFT Application Period Opening Soon

Daniel CooperIndustry News Release

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The Citrus Research and Field Trial Foundation Inc. (CRAFT Foundation) board of directors, technical working group (TWG), staff and a legion of volunteers have been working at top speed throughout the summer finalizing the formation, organization and funding of the CRAFT program. The first priority for the CRAFT Foundation staff and board of directors has been securing all available funding … Read More

Citrus Industry Dodges Hurricane Dorian

Ernie Neffhurricane

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“This was a big miracle,” Indian River Citrus League Executive Vice President Doug Bournique said late Wednesday morning after Hurricane Dorian had passed Florida’s Citrus Belt. He said while assessments were still being made, there apparently was only minimal leaf and fruit loss in the Indian River region. The Indian River area was the closest Florida citrus-growing region to Dorian, … Read More

CRDF and UF Resolve Differences

Ernie NeffCRDF

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At the Citrus Research and Development Foundation’s (CRDF) Aug. 27 board of directors meeting, Chief Operating Officer Rick Dantzler provided information about a resolution of differences between CRDF and the University of Florida (UF). Since its formation in 2009, CRDF has operated as a direct support organization of UF. This spring, UF reportedly indicated that CRDF would have to spend … Read More