The Florida 2022–23 all-orange forecast inched up 1% in March to 16.1 million boxes while the grapefruit forecast rose 7% to 1.6 million boxes. The U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistics Service (USDA NASS) forecast for Florida tangerines and tangelos was unchanged at 500,000 boxes.
The entire rise of 100,000 boxes in the orange forecast was in the non-Valencia crop, which is almost completely harvested. The non-Valencia forecast is now for 6.1 million boxes.
Florida’s Valencia orange forecast remains at 10 million boxes. The late-season Valencia harvest is still in its early stages. Current Valencia fruit size is below the minimum and is projected to be below the minimum at harvest. Fruit droppage is above the maximum and is projected to be above the maximum at harvest. References to minimum and maximum refer to the previous 10 seasons, excluding the Hurricane Irma-impacted 2017–18 season. Fruit droppage has increased drastically since the finding of HLB disease in Florida in 2005.
Florida’s 1.6 million box all-grapefruit forecast is 100,000 boxes higher than the February projection. The red grapefruit forecast climbed from 1.32 million boxes in February to 1.44 million boxes in March. The white grapefruit forecast dropped from 180,000 boxes to 160,000 boxes. By late February, 72% of Florida grapefruit rows had been harvested.
The USDA NASS citrus forecasts for Arizona, California and Texas were unchanged from February.
See the full citrus forecast report here.
The next update to the citrus crop forecast will be on April 11 at approximately 12:00 p.m. on the Citrus Industry website.
Coverage of the USDA NASS citrus crop forecast is brought to you by Farm Credit and Florida Citrus Mutual.
Source: USDA NASS