Peace River Valley

Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Association Ceases Operations

Daniel Cooper Citrus, Florida

Peace River Valley

Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Association (PRVCGA) is ending its 31-year run. After much consideration and deliberation, the association’s board of directors announced the decision to close down in a letter released Feb. 12 by Executive Director Emma Keller.

The letter stated that the tough decision to close the association “comes after facing numerous challenges that have significantly impacted our ability to operate effectively.” It cited “the continued decline in production, market fluctuations and other factors.”


The directors announced they will use $20,000 of remaining association funds to create the Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Scholarship. They stated that the scholarship will “make positive impacts to the industry for years to come.”

Florida Citrus Mutual will manage and maintain the scholarship, which is for students from Hardee and Desoto counties pursuing agricultural degrees. Each student will receive $1,000. The scholarship will continue until funds run out. An account will be opened for anyone wanting to donate to the scholarship to keep it funded.


The directors also announced the grower roundtables that the association has hosted for years will continue. These events, which offer an opportunity for growers to share practices and bounce ideas off each other, have received positive feedback.

“It was decided to take the remaining funds to ensure that these roundtable events continue to happen,” stated the letter. “They will be held throughout our region. Florida Citrus Mutual will be responsible for managing these as well.”


PRVCGA was founded in 1993 for citrus growers in DeSoto and Hardee counties. It later expanded to also include growers in Charlotte, Manatee and Sarasota counties.  

“During the years, PRVCGA board and staff have prioritized bridging the gap between growers throughout our region and elected officials,” the directors reported.


The letter stated that Keller, who became executive director in 2022, “was dealt a hard hand … Despite the industry struggles and Hurricane Ian, she has continued to fight, protect and remain loyal to our growers. Emma has been a bright, hardworking, energetic, and passionate executive director … Currently, Emma is exploring her career options.”

Source: PRVCGA

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