Folta Named Pro Farmer Ag Person of the Year

Daniel Cooper Citrus

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Renowned University of Florida genomics and photobiology researcher Kevin Folta has been named 2016 Pro Farmer Ag Person of the Year. Folta is professor and chair of the horticulture sciences department at the UF Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. “Dr. Folta has been a leader in the fight against the anti-GMO movement for years,” said Chip …

Sneak Peek: January Citrus Industry Magazine

Tacy Callies Citrus

A new year is just around the corner and so is the next issue of Citrus Industry magazine. The January issue features a cover story on Callie Walker, chief of the Bureau of Pest Eradication and Control for the Florida Department of Agriculture. Learn about Walker’s deep roots in citrus and what she is doing about the abandoned grove problem. …

HLB Management in Brazil

Tacy Callies Citrus

Observations and lessons learned from a recent citrus grower tour By Stephen H. Futch In June 2016, a group of Florida citrus growers and industry representatives embarked on a trip to tour the Brazilian citrus industry. The primary purpose of the trip was to learn more about how huanglongbing (HLB or citrus greening) is being managed in Brazil and how …


Update on Approval of Bactericides for HLB

Ernie Neff Bactericides, HLB Management

Many Florida citrus growers consider the bactericides that they’ve been applying this year to be their best hope in the fight against HLB. Temporary use of the bactericides was approved this spring by Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam. The industry is seeking Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approval for continued use of the products. Harold Browning, chief operations officer of …

citrus cold protection

Will There Be a Citrus Freeze?

Ernie Neff Freeze Protection, Weather

Rick Lusher, project manager for the Florida Automated Weather Network (FAWN), won’t predict whether there’ll be a citrus freeze this season. But he did tell growers in Sebring on December 15 what weather the federal government is expecting through freeze season. “The most recent three-month outlook that NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) provides shows above normal temperatures and below …

Citrus Growers in the Panhandle Are Enthusiastic Newcomers

Ernie Neff Citrus

An official with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) recently visited some citrus growers in the Panhandle, north of the traditional Florida citrus belt. Callie Walker, chief of the FDACS Bureau of Pest Eradication and Control, shares her impressions of the fledgling industry. “I was in Perry, Florida; we were looking at citrus production,” Walker said. “A …

Global Perspectives

A Bitter Analysis of the World’s Orange Juice Market

Tacy Callies Citrus, Global Perspectives

By Marcos Fava Neves During the last five years, I was involved in a study that examined data in depth about the world’s orange juice (OJ) consumption. This study, led by Markestrat, gathers data from Citrus BR associates, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Tetrapak, Compass, Nielsen, Planet Retail and other recognized international organizations that collect data. The analysis was performed in …


Stronger Standards for Applying the Riskiest Pesticides

Daniel Cooper Industry News Release, Pests

Improved training and minimum age requirements will help protect people and the environment. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is finalizing standards for applicators who apply restricted-use pesticides that are not available for purchase by the general public, and require special handling. “We are committed to keeping our communities safe, protecting our environment and protecting workers and their families,” said …

Ellis, Sparks, Robinson to Join Citrus Hall of Fame

Ernie Neff Citrus

Jim Ellis of Bartow, Mike Sparks of Apollo Beach and the late T. Ralph Robinson will be inducted into the Florida Citrus Hall of Fame on March 10 at Florida Southern College in Lakeland. Ellis has been a grower, packer, industry representative and historian. He currently works for the Division of Fruit and Vegetables in the Florida Department of Agriculture …

florida citrus

USDA Citrus Crop Forecast Has Little Changes

Daniel Cooper Citrus, Crop Forecast

Mark Hudson, of the U.S. Department of Agriculture/National Agricultural Statistics Service, reported the December citrus crop forecast. Florida has no changes in non-Valencia or Valencia oranges. Grapefruit for the month dropped from 9.6 to 9.3 million boxes with white at 2 million boxes and red at 7.3 million boxes each. Tangerines and tangelos changed from 1.55 to 1.5 million boxes, …

Researcher: Well-Managed Trees Can Do OK with HLB

Ernie Neff HLB Management

Although a field trial indicates that microbial soil amendments didn’t seem to help trees with HLB, the trial project manager sees a take-home message for growers. That message is that “well-managed trees can continue getting along OK,” says Jim Syvertsen, a scientist with the Citrus Research and Development Foundation. Syvertsen summarizes results he presented at a recent field day in …

microbes, HLB

Results of Microbial Soil Amendments in HLB-Infected Grove

Ernie Neff Citrus Greening, HLB Management

Approximately 40 people trekked into a Premier Citrus Management grove in Saint Lucie County on December 6 to learn that microbial soil amendments haven’t increased yields in an HLB-infected grove. Daniel Bott, Premier Citrus division manager for approximately 5,000 acres, including the trial site off Indrio Road, comments on the results. “There seems to be some differentiation between the products,” …

Update on Bactericide Trials

Ernie Neff Bactericides, Citrus Greening, HLB Management

A Citrus Research and Development Foundation (CRDF) researcher provided an update on grower trials of bactericides for HLB to the CRDF’s Commercial Product Delivery Committee on December 5. CRDF Chief Operations Officer Harold Browning summarizes the report. “Most of the metrics that we’re most interested in are coming up as we go into harvest,” Browning says. “The true test of …

Leadership Change at Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Association

Tacy Callies Citrus

Update as of 1-4-17: Katie Marks has decided to stay with her current employer and will not be accepting the position as executive director with Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Association. Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Association (PRVCGA) Executive Director LeAnna Himrod announced she has accepted a new position as communications manager at the Florida Department of Citrus. Responsibilities in …

Sensory and Consumer Studies for Improving Citrus Quality

Tacy Callies Citrus

By Laura Reuss, Fred Gmitter and Yu Wang In Florida, it is necessary to produce large quantities of high-quality citrus fruits in order to keep pace with the projected market growth, as well as to maintain viability of the citrus industry. Successful development of new varieties and pre- and post-harvest practices should be consumer-driven. However, consumer behavior is often affected …

Update on $9 Million NuPsyllid Effort Against HLB

Ernie Neff Citrus Greening, HLB Management, Pests

Citrus Research and Development Foundation (CRDF) Chief Operations Officer Harold Browning provides an update on a major five-year HLB project that CRDF is managing. “It’s (NuPsyllid) a project that started in 2012, involving a team of scientists from all over the country … And the goal is to build and release into the field the psyllid that has less capacity …

Georgia Citrus Up-and-Coming

Tacy Callies Citrus

By Ernie Neff Georgia’s fledgling citrus industry recently formed the state’s first citrus association with a retired federal law enforcement agent leading the way. “We are pioneers in this,” says Lindy Savelle, president of the Georgia Citrus Association (GCA). Indeed they are pioneers. Extension agent Jake Price for Lowndes County, Georgia, reports that about 40 growers had 150 citrus acres …


HLB and Genetic Engineering: The FDOC’s Role

Ernie Neff Citrus Greening, Genetic Engineering

Communicating about genetic engineering as a partial solution to greening disease (HLB) was the topic of a recent OJ break in Sebring. Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC) Executive Director Shannon Shepp participated in the meeting and discusses the FDOC’s role in telling consumers about greening. “We’re very clear on the fact that biotechnology research is happening … We know that …