Nominations Now Open for the Florida Agricultural Hall of Fame

Jim Rogers Awards, Industry News Release

The Florida Agricultural Hall of Fame is now accepting nominations for its class of 2023 inductees. The Florida Agricultural Hall of Fame honors producers, commodity leaders, educators, scientists and others who have made significant contributions to the production of food in Florida. The online nomination form is available on the Florida Ag Hall of Fame website. Visit floridaaghalloffame.org and click …

Juice Company Founder Becomes Hall of Famer

Jim Rogers Awards, Industry News Release, Orange Juice

Natalie’s Orchid Island Juice Company founder and CEO Marygrace Sexton has been inducted into the Specialty Food Association Hall of Fame. Sexton started the company more than 30 years ago with a single, used juicing machine, no contracts and a small production space. Today, the company has two facilities in Fort Pierce, Florida, and distributes its juices in 32 states …

New SWFREC Director Named

Jim Rogers Education, Industry News Release, Research

Michael Burton has been named the next director of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Southwest Florida Research and Education Center (SWFREC). He’s scheduled to start at the Immokalee facility on July 1. Burton recently served for 17 months as proxy for the dean of Missouri State University’s William H. Darr College of Agriculture. He …

Uncle Matt’s Organic Launches Low-Calorie OJ

Jim Rogers Industry News Release, Orange Juice

Uncle Matt’s Organic recently announced the launch of its Matt50 orange juice beverage. Matt50 contains half the sugar and calories of regular orange juice and is boosted with Vitamin C, prebiotics, probiotics, calcium, potassium and folate. Susan McLean, Uncle Matt’s Organic vice president of marketing and innovation, said Matt50 contains just 50 calories per serving. It is sweetened with organic stevia, a …

Alico Has Lower Production but Higher Prices

Jim Rogers Industry News Release, Production

Alico Inc. reported it had reduced orange production and lower pound solids per box during the six months that ended March 31. However, the company received higher prices per pound solids. For the period, Alico Citrus harvested approximately 4.1 million boxes of fruit, a decrease of 10.3% from the same period of the prior fiscal year. The decrease is principally related to fewer pieces …

Groom to Succeed Behr as Florida’s Natural CEO

Jim Rogers Industry News Release

Christopher Groom will succeed Robert Behr as chief executive officer (CEO) of Florida’s Natural Growers on Jan. 1, 2023. Groom is currently chief operating officer (COO) of the cooperative. Since 2011, Groom has held several roles with the organization. He was marketing executive and then vice president of sales and marketing before becoming COO in 2019. “Chris is a valued …

citrus crop forecast

A Challenging Harvest Season for Alico

Jim Rogers Citrus, Industry News Release

The current citrus harvest season “has been a challenging one for Alico,” the company stated in a late March press release. “In addition to a harvest season that was anticipated to produce less fruit than in the prior year, many of the state’s citrus groves, including Alico’s citrus groves, were impacted by a freeze event in late January 2022.” Nearly …

growers

Reminder on Insurance Requirements for Hurricane Irma Relief

Jim Rogers Florida, hurricane, Industry News Release

The Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) is reminding growers that participation in the Florida Citrus Recovery Block Grant (CRBG) requires the purchase of federal crop and/or tree insurance. The CRBG is available to growers who suffered crop damage due to Hurricane Irma in 2017. The insurance must be bought for two years (Part 3, Option 1) or four years …

USDA Disaster Declaration for Florida Growers Impacted by Freeze

Tacy Callies freeze, Industry News Release

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) announced the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) disaster designation for 17 counties and 10 contiguous counties impacted by the freezing temperatures that occurred in late January. View the USDA’s approval letter here. “With the approval of our request for a disaster declaration, farmers in Florida have resources available …

Ezell to Lead Highlands Citrus Growers

Jim Rogers Industry News Release

Emma Reynolds Ezell will become president of the Highlands County Citrus Growers Association (HCCGA) board of directors during the association’s March 3 annual meeting. Ezell previously served as president in 2015 and has been on the association’s board of directors since 2014. She is involved in both her own and her family’s citrus growing, caretaking and harvesting business. Ezell is …

Barrington Crowned Miss Florida Citrus

Jim Rogers Industry News Release

Payton Barrington of Orlando was crowned the 2022 Miss Florida Citrus on Jan. 22 in Winter Haven. She will travel extensively promoting the Florida citrus industry. Barrington was chosen during the Miss Florida Citrus and Miss Winter Haven Program held at Polk State College. Jada Carter of Tallahassee was crowned Miss Winter Haven. Barrington and Carter will both compete in …

Citrus Flower Bud Advisories Resume

Tacy Callies Industry News Release

The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) is providing growers with regular flower bud advisories as the critical time for citrus grove management begins this winter. UF/IFAS associate professor Tripti Vashisth restarted the advisories Dec. 2 and will continue providing them every other week through the spring. The advisories provide critical information about the intensity and …

Florida citrus

Florida Citrus Company Says Production Down, Prices Up

Daniel Cooper Industry News Release

Florida citrus company and landowner Alico, Inc. saw harvested boxes of fruit decrease during the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30 but got a boost from higher prices linked to consumer demand for orange juice. The company reported this in federal Securities and Exchange Commission filings released Tuesday. Alico said it harvested 6.4 million boxes of fruit during the year, …

Douglas Plant Health Is Now DPH Biologicals™

Tacy Callies Industry News Release

Douglas Plant Health announced it has changed its name to DPH Biologicals. The new name recognizes the century-long commitment of its parent company, Douglas Products, to deliver effective and high-quality products to its customers while more clearly focusing on expanding its biologicals product platform to deliver value to customers by sustainably increasing productivity, yield and profitability. In 2018, the assets …

Citrus World Reports Increased Returns

Ernie Neff Industry News Release

Citrus World, Inc. (CWI) reported its top pool for early- and mid-season oranges paid a combined $2.41 per pound solid (PPS) last season. The same combined pool for Valencia oranges paid $2.61 PPS. Grapefruit returned an average of $2.30 PPS. The results were announced at CWI’s annual stockholders’ meeting on Nov. 8. Chief Operating Officer Chris Groom discussed sales performance …

Farm Stress Help for Florida

Ernie Neff Industry News Release

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) has been awarded a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to carry out a new Farm Stress Awareness and Reduction Initiative in Florida. Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried announced the grant on Nov. 3, National Stress Awareness Day. With the grant, FDACS will launch an outreach campaign to …

Uncle Matt’s Organic Supports Charity

Ernie Neff Industry News Release

Uncle Matt’s Organic announced a partnership supporting Chris Nikic and his 1% Better Foundation. A portion of the proceeds from Uncle Matt’s Organic juice sales through January 2022 will be donated to the foundation. Nikic recently became the first person with Down Syndrome to complete a 140.6-mile Ironman triathlon. His success motto was to get “1 percent better” every day. …

Shekels Joins Certis Biologicals

Ernie Neff Industry News Release

Lee Shekels has joined Certis Biologicals in a newly created role, Florida citrus sales specialist. He will work with the company’s existing Florida sales and field development teams.  “Lee’s expertise and knowledge of the citrus industry will be key in bringing biologicals as proven crop protection tools to growers with sustainable product solutions to support growth in the industry,” said …

Johnson to Be UF/IFAS Extension Dean

Ernie Neff Industry News Release

Andra Johnson, associate director of Penn State Extension, will be the next dean of University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension and director of the Florida Cooperative Extension Service. He will assume the role on Nov. 1. Johnson will lead UF/IFAS’ statewide network of more than 650 faculty educators and scientists, whose programs support economic, environmental …