Australia Fruit Traceability Project for Exports

Ernie NeffTechnology

Agriculture Victoria is funding an innovative $770,000 traceability pilot project for high-value exports that will be led by Citrus Australia, which represents commercial citrus growers. The funding is part of the Victorian government’s Food to Market program. The Citrus Australia project will utilize leading tracing technology, isotope testing, cool-chain tracking and orchard mapping to enhance traceability. Citrus Australia CEO Nathan … Read More

Technologies for Improved Nutrient Analysis

Tacy CalliesNutrition, Technology

By Yiannis Ampatzidis and Ute Albrecht Nutrient management is important for citrus production. Regular nutrient assessments should be conducted to optimize nutrient balance and prevent deficiencies or over-fertilization. Optimizing nutrition is important for tree health and can improve tolerance to stresses and diseases. Good nutrient management requires regular field monitoring to identify problems and examine crop responses. Leaves need to … Read More

Yield Predictions Improved by AI

Ernie NeffTechnology

University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) researchers are using artificial intelligence (AI) to help citrus growers better forecast their seasonal yield. A preliminary study showed that the AI technology predicts yields with 98% accuracy. That’s way better than the 75% to 85% accuracy growers get when they count trees manually, said Yiannis Ampatzidis, UF/IFAS associate professor … Read More

Technology for Early HLB Diagnosis

Ernie NeffTechnology

Penn State and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists have used cutting-edge CRISPR/Cas technology to develop a diagnostic test that could enable early diagnosis of huanglongbing (HLB). In a study newly published in the journal Phytopathology, the researchers demonstrated that the new test can detect the presence of the HLB causal agent — the bacterium Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (CLas) — … Read More

New Use for Orange Extract

Ernie NeffOrange Juice, Technology

An extract from orange juice production is offering an eco-friendly way for developing transparent wood, an innovative structural material for building construction. Since it was first introduced in 2016, transparent wood has been developed by researchers at KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden. The wood lets natural light through and can store thermal energy.    The key to making … Read More

Estimating Crop Yield With UAVs

Ashley RobinsonTechnology

A researcher at the Agricultural University of Athens (AUA) in Greece is using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to estimate crop yield. “Crop yield is the most important piece of information for crop management in precision agriculture. Early crop yield estimations allow farmers to optimize farm operation scheduling, field management and product marketing decisions,” said AUA associate professor Spyros Fountas. Fountas … Read More

How Artificial Intelligence Can Enhance the Citrus Industry

Tacy CalliesTechnology

By Yiannis Ampatzidis Artificial intelligence (AI) is a promising area in computer science, automation, robotics and agriculture. AI describes the capability of a machine to imitate intelligent human behavior and mimic cognitive functions such as learning and problem-solving. Machine learning, which is an application of AI, is based on the idea that a machine, such as a computer or microcontroller, … Read More

University of Florida Focusing on AI

Ernie NeffTechnology


Researchers with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) are working as teams to use artificial intelligence (AI) to attack complex issues. An example of such team work is Arnold Schumann, a professor at the Citrus Research and Education Center, working with weed scientist Nathan Boyd at the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center. They use … Read More

App Now Available to Diagnose Citrus Leaf Problems

Tacy CalliesTechnology

Visual identification of nutrient deficiencies and leaf damage is an important diagnostic tool for fine-tuning management of citrus. Arnold Schumann, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) professor, shared how UF/IFAS researchers have used artificial intelligence (AI) to diagnose citrus nutritional deficiencies, diseases and pest damage. According to Schumann, disease and pest symptoms on leaves may cause … Read More

Advice for Using Soil Moisture Sensors

Tacy CalliesIrrigation, Technology

Proper irrigation management is key to optimize water use and increase crop yield. Water is a limiting factor in Florida citrus production during most of the year due to extremely sandy soils with low water-holding capacity and non-uniform distribution of rainfall. Soil moisture sensor systems may provide the most reliable data for effective citrus irrigation scheduling under these conditions. Rad … Read More

High-Tech Scouting in Citrus Production

Tacy CalliesTechnology

By Yiannis Ampatzidis and Tara Wade Traditional sensing technologies in citrus production for pest and disease detection and field phenotyping rely on manual sampling, which is time consuming and labor intensive. Since availability of personnel trained for field scouting is a major problem, small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) equipped with various sensors and artificial intelligence (AI) can simplify the surveying … Read More

Citrus Growers Tell What Technology They Use

Ernie NeffTechnology

Figure 2. A drone may be used to deliver spot treatments.

Representatives of two Florida citrus-growing operations recently shared ways their companies have utilized drones, electronic sensors and advanced spray technology to enhance their operations. Joby Sherrod, director of grove operations for Duda & Sons, and Timothee Sallin, co-CEO of IMG Enterprises, were participants in a virtual Florida-Israel Agriculture Innovation Summit. Duda and IMG have approximately 11,000 acres and 10,000 acres … Read More

Survey on Water and Technology Use

Ernie NeffTechnology, Water

University of Florida (UF) researchers are conducting a survey to study smart agriculture technology acceptance and adoption behavior of Florida specialty crop growers, specifically growers of crops requiring regular irrigation. Adam Watson, an assistant professor in the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, and doctoral candidate Raminder Kaur are requesting the information. The survey requests feedback on growers’ use of … Read More

Artificial Intelligence System Wins UF Honors

Ernie NeffAwards, Technology

UF Innovate | Tech Licensing recently recognized an artificial intelligence (AI) system known as Agroview as a UF Invention of the Year. The AI system was invented by Yiannis Ampatzidis and his research team at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Southwest Florida Research and Education Center (SWFREC). The system utilizes images from drones and satellites … Read More

Technology to Help Citrus Growers Cut Costs

Tacy CalliesTechnology

Traditional data collection for pest and disease detection relies on manual sampling, which can be time consuming and labor intensive. But now, Florida citrus growers could have artificial intelligence (AI) technology to simplify the process, better care for their crops and save money. Yiannis Ampatzidis, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) assistant professor, discussed several new … Read More

Consumer Acceptance of Genetic Technology

Tacy CalliesTechnology

Given that genetic engineering is a possible solution to citrus greening, understanding public perceptions of genetic technologies is important. Lisa House, director of the Florida Agricultural Market Research Center and a professor in the Food and Resource Economics Department at the University of Florida, made an online presentation during the recent Agricultural and Applied Economics Association annual meeting. She discussed … Read More

Technology Helps Growers Count Citrus Trees

Tacy CalliesTechnology

In his quest to find the right drone and other artificial intelligence to help ensure citrus growers get an accurate count of their crop, Yiannis Ampatzidis and his research team have developed a system known as Agroview. The technology saves farmers time and money and helps them accurately count their trees, which is important for insurance purposes. The latest results … Read More

Smartphone App Under Development for Diagnosing Citrus Leaf Symptoms

Tacy CalliesTechnology

By Arnold Schumann, Perseverança Mungofa, Laura Waldo and Chris Oswalt Since the first Apple iPhone was launched in 2007, there have been many improvements to smartphone cameras and their increasingly powerful graphics-processing capabilities. In recent years, these powerful hand-held computers have also made their impact on agriculture, where they are being used for communications, mapping, navigation, information retrieval and diagnostic … Read More

UF Researchers Study Drone Use in Citrus

Len WilcoxAll In For Citrus Podcast, California Corner, Technology

In the latest All In For Citrus podcast, Yiannis Ampatzidis, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) associate professor of agricultural and biological engineering, discusses new studies in drone technology applications for agriculture. Citrus growers can currently use drones to find out how many trees live in their groves, and they soon may be able to detect … Read More

IMG Citrus Invests in Packinghouse

Daniel CooperIndustry News Release, Technology


IMG Citrus, a family-owned, vertically integrated citrus grower, packer and shipper in Vero Beach, Florida, has invested $1.5 million into its packinghouse processing line. The company added a state-of-the-art electronic fruit grader, the Global Scan 7, manufactured in France. The new sorter has the ability to precisely capture 120 images per fruit and up to 120 fruit per second in … Read More