Ian, GMOs and Marketing Discussed at Citrus Commission Meeting

Jim Rogers Florida Citrus Commission, hurricane, Marketing

Many media inquiries about Florida citrus following Hurricane Ian were addressed by Florida Department of Citrus marketing agency Edible. Alex Armentano of Edible told the Florida Citrus Commission during its October meeting that the agency worked closely with Florida Citrus Mutual and other partners to respond to media requests. Edible worked with partners to create materials and messaging and to …

CRISPR Research Update for HLB and Canker

Jim Rogers Breeding, Florida Citrus Commission, Research

Yianni Lagos, chief executive officer of Soilcea, told the Florida Citrus Commission (FCC) in October about his company’s efforts to use CRISPR gene editing to aid the citrus industry in its struggles with canker and HLB. Soilcea was founded to find solutions to these citrus diseases. The company has exclusive licenses to patents from the University of Florida to cure …

Department of Citrus Budget Reduced Slightly

Jim Rogers Florida Citrus Commission, Florida Department of Citrus

The Florida Citrus Commission (FCC) on Oct. 26 approved a Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC) 2022–23 budget that is only $123,000 less than a preliminary budget approved in June. Approval of the $29.795 million budget came less than a month after Hurricane Ian knocked much of the state’s citrus crop to the ground and damaged trees. The FCC serves as …

Nurseries Approved for Expedited Propagation Program

Jim Rogers Florida Citrus Commission, Florida Department of Citrus, nurseries

The Florida Citrus Commission (FCC) on Aug. 24 approved agreements with 25 nurseries for the Program for Expedited Propagation of HLB Tolerant and Resistant Trees. The nurseries are: Agromillora Florida Inc. Ben Hill Griffin Inc. Blue Heron Nurseries LLC Brewer Citrus LLC Brite Leaf Citrus Nursery LLC Citrific Holdings Inc. CitriSun Nurseries LLC Cutrale Farms Inc. Dilley Citrus Nursery Inc. …

Florida Citrus Commissioners Reappointed

Jim Rogers Florida Citrus Commission, Florida Department of Citrus

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Aug. 5 announced the reappointment of the nine members of the Florida Citrus Commission. They are: CHRISTOPHER GROOMGroom is chief operating officer of Florida’s Natural Growers. He serves as vice president and treasurer of Florida’s Natural Growers Foundation. Groom earned his bachelor’s degree in economics and Hispanic studies from Northwestern University and his master’s degree in …

HLB-Tolerant Tree Program Progressing

Tacy Callies Florida Citrus Commission, Florida Department of Citrus, HLB Management

The goal of an expedited tree propagation program is to have several million HLB-tolerant or HLB-resistant trees planted in the next several years. Greg Hodges, assistant director of the Florida Department of Agriculture’s Division of Plant Industry (DPI), said he believes that goal is attainable. Hodges and others presented the propagation plans to the Florida Citrus Commission (FCC) on July …

Preliminary Department of Citrus Budget Approved

Jim Rogers financial, Florida Citrus Commission, Florida Department of Citrus

The Florida Citrus Commission on June 15 approved a preliminary 2022–23 operating budget for the Florida Department of Citrus of $29.9 million. The preliminary budget includes $19.125 million in general revenue funding from the state of Florida for marketing, research and administration. The majority of the budget will fund domestic marketing programs aimed at driving sales of Florida orange juice (OJ). …

citrus crop

Florida Citrus Commission Changes Enacted

Jim Rogers Florida Citrus Commission, Legislative

Gov. Ron DeSantis recently signed legislation that modifies the makeup of the Florida Citrus Commission. The legislation expanded the commission’s size, added new citrus districts and created new requirements for membership. The number of citrus districts in the state is expanded from three to six, and the commission membership is increased from nine to 11. Due to the expansion of …

Citrus Department Proposes Preliminary 2022–23 Budget

Jim Rogers financial, Florida Citrus Commission, Florida Department of Citrus

The Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC) in May proposed a preliminary 2022–23 operating budget of $31.4 million to the Florida Citrus Commission, its governing body. The 2021–22 operating budget was $29 million. Global marketing and public relations represent the bulk of the 2022–23 budget at $22.9 million, a 3.5% reduction from the previous season. The proposed orange budget will increase …

Program to Provide HLB-Tolerant Trees

Jim Rogers Florida Citrus Commission, Florida Department of Citrus, HLB Management

The Florida Citrus Commission (FCC) on May 18 received an update on a propagation program intended to quickly produce and commercialize trees showing tolerance or resistance to HLB disease, also known as citrus greening. The program will focus on the Donaldson tree and other escaped trees. The Donaldson is a tree at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Whitmore Farm that …

A Fruitful Partnership for Florida Growers

Jim Rogers Florida Citrus Commission, Florida Citrus Mutual, Florida Department of Citrus

Florida Citrus Commission (FCC) Chairman Steve Johnson recently cited the partnership between the FCC and Florida Citrus Mutual as “a shining example of the synergy happening in our industry.” The FCC serves as the governing board of the Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC). Mutual is the state’s largest association of citrus growers. “The two entities, which at times have diverse …

Donaldson Tree Is ‘Beacon of Hope’

Jim Rogers Florida Citrus Commission, HLB Management

A recently discovered HLB-infected tree that is producing high levels of fruit holds hope for Florida’s citrus industry, according to Florida Citrus Commission (FCC) Chairman Steve Johnson. “By now, many of you have heard about the Donaldson tree,” said Johnson. “Recently rediscovered at USDA’s (U.S. Department of Agriculture) Whitmore Farm, this decades-old tree is abundantly producing early-season oranges and despite …

citrus

Citrus Recovery Act Seeks to Update Florida Citrus Commission

Jim Rogers Florida, Florida Citrus Commission, Regulation

It is set to be a busy legislative session for agricultural interests in Florida. One of the bills making its way through the process is SB 1002, the Citrus Recovery Act. Sen. Danny Burgess (R-District 20) introduced the bill to amend the Florida Citrus Commission (FCC). The FCC is the governing body of the Florida Department of Citrus. The Citrus …

Florida Citrus Commission Appointments Made

Ernie Neff Florida Citrus Commission

Gov. Ron DeSantis appointed three new members to the Florida Citrus Commission and reappointed four others on Oct. 8. The appointments of John Smoak and Daniel Sutton fill two vacant seats, and the appointment of Christopher Groom fills a seat held by a commissioner serving a previously expired term. Commissioners Carlos Martinez, Martin “Marty” McKenna, Steve Johnson and William “Bill” …

NVDMC, CRDF History and Updates

Ernie Neff Florida Citrus Commission

The Florida Citrus Commission (FCC) recently heard presentations about the history and current work of both the New Varieties Development and Management Corporation (NVDMC) and the Citrus Research and Development Foundation (CRDF). NVDMCRosa Walsh, Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC) director of scientific research, said from 2003 to 2005, the FCC discussed the need for a program that would develop, license …

New Florida Citrus Commission Chairman

Tacy Callies Florida Citrus Commission

Steve Johnson, owner and general manager of Johnson Harvesting, was elected chairman of the Florida Citrus Commission (FCC) this week. He succeeds Ned Hancock in the chairman position. The FCC oversees the Florida Department of Citrus. Johnson is a fourth-generation citrus grower and cattle rancher based in Wauchula. In addition to managing the operations of the citrus harvesting and brokerage …

Increased Florida Department of Citrus Budget

Tacy Callies 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. …

Preliminary 2020-21 Budget Approved for FDOC

Tacy Callies Florida Citrus Commission

On June 17, the Florida Citrus Commission approved a preliminary 2020-21 operating budget for the Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC) of nearly $20 million. The FDOC’s total preliminary budget is $19.875 million with an overall budget increase over the previous season of about $4.2 million, largely due to an increase in general revenue funds. The budget includes an anticipated $5.65 million …

Florida Citrus Commission Considers Tax Increase

Tacy Callies Florida Citrus Commission

To maintain a surge in orange juice sales linked to the coronavirus pandemic, the Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC) is looking to boost marketing, which could result in a higher tax for growers. On June 17, the Florida Citrus Commission, the governing body of the FDOC, directed staff members to map out a $10 million marketing plan that could require …