Increased Florida Department of Citrus Budget

Tacy CalliesFlorida Citrus Commission

Florida Citrus Commission

On Oct. 21, the Florida Citrus Commission approved a revised 2020-21 operating budget for the Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC) of nearly $19.8 million.

The commission voted to sustain the preliminary budget set in June, prior to the October crop forecast, through a box assessment of $.12 on oranges used for processing plus up to $1 million in fund balance. The $.12 assessment on processing oranges is up from $.07 last season. Box assessments for fresh orange, grapefruit and specialty citrus remain the same as the previous year at $.05, $.07 and $.07, respectively.

The change in the box assessment rate for processed oranges along with the use of fund balance allow domestic orange juice marketing activities to remain at the same level proposed by the FDOC in June.

The FDOC’s 2020-21 campaign focuses on e-commerce campaigns that drive consumers to purchase Florida orange juice through online retail partners, and also includes paid display and search, social media, influencer engagement, earned media and events. The campaign is estimated to lead to 750 million impressions and drive $8 to $10 million in sales directly attributable to FDOC programs.

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“As a grower, I can’t individually influence the amount of orange juice people drink. But, collectively as a commission, we can. Today’s vote marks a return to investing in our future and working together to ensure the Florida citrus industry is here for years to come,” said Ned Hancock, chairman of the Florida Citrus Commission.

The revised budget is an increase of about $4 million over the previous season, largely due to an increase in general revenue funds. The budget includes $5.65 million general revenue funding from the state of Florida. It also includes $3.695 million in Foreign Agricultural Service Market Access Program funds from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to be used on international programs, as well as $275,000 in Agricultural Trade Promotion funds to be used on fresh orange programs in Canada and Florida orange juice programs in South Korea.

The budget is based on the USDA October crop estimate of 57 million boxes of oranges and 4.5 million boxes of grapefruit.

Source: FDOC

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