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About the Citrus Crop Forecast
Candi Erick, agricultural statistics administrator with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Florida Agricultural Statistics Service, describes the basics for creating a citrus crop forecast:
“The four basic parameters used in the forecast are number of bearing trees, number of fruit per tree, fruit size and fruit loss from droppage. The first two of these parameters have the greatest influence on the forecast.
“The general model incorporates the estimated total fruit (bearing trees times average fruit per tree), divided by the number of fruit projected to make a standard box at harvest (using the fruit size survey), reduced for droppage (the fraction of fruit counted at survey time, but lost to droppage before it was harvested). We have different surveys to collect the data.
“The sample design stratifies that state’s citrus belt into five nearly homogenous areas, and the bearing trees into five age groups. Sample groves for surveying are selected from the citrus tree inventory using probability sampling procedures. Regressions based upon the indicators and actual production from previous seasons are used to make projections based upon current conditions.”
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