By Ariel Singerman
For processed oranges grown in Southwest Florida during 2020–21, the estimated cultural costs were $1,508 per acre. Total costs of production were $1,882 per acre. Those estimates are down $214 per acre compared to the previous season. This is the result of growers reducing costs across all grove programs, except for fungicides and irrigation. Such a cutback in spending was a response to the decrease in prices that occurred in 2019–20.
Based on the total cost of production estimate and the season’s state average of 155 boxes per acre, the delivered-in break-even price for early and mid-season oranges was $3.01 per pound solids. For Valencias, the delivered-in break-even price for yield pegged at the season’s state average of 147 boxes per acrewas $2.87 per pound solids. Alternatively, the break-even yield for early and mid-season oranges would need to be 243 boxes per acre. For Valencias, it would need to be 185 boxes per acre.
For fresh grapefruit grown in Indian River during 2020–21, the estimated cultural costs were $2,440.42 per acre. Total costs of production were $2,999.46 per acre. Those estimates are down only slightly compared to those of 2018–19 (the most recent season for which estimates were available).
There were some changes in the grapefruit budget allocation. The main changes compared to 2018–19 included a decrease in nutritionals spending by $55 per acre, a decrease in fertilizer by $47 per acre, and a decrease in irrigation, tree replacement and foliar applications by $45 per acre. There was an increase in adjuvant and biostimulant spending by $60.25 and $33.75 per acre, respectively.
Based on the total cost of production estimate of $2,999.46 per acre, and assuming a packout of 69%, as well as 30% of field-run and 22% of eliminations, the delivered-in break-even price with yield pegged at 250 boxes per acre was $20.71 per box.
Ariel Singerman is an assistant professor at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Citrus Research and Education Center in Lake Alfred.
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