Georgia Citrus Avoids COVID-19 Harm

Ernie NeffCOVID-19, Georgia

Georgia’s citrus crop was harvested before the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States, so the state’s small but growing citrus industry has thus far avoided impacts from the disease. “We don’t think marketing will be affected by COVID, but harvesting (next season) could become problematic if our harvest crews experience problems,” said Lindy Savelle, president of the Georgia Citrus Association. “Although …

Update on Georgia Citrus Production

Tacy CalliesGeorgia, Production

The citrus industry in Georgia is quickly gaining ground. Extension agents from Fort Valley State University (FVSU), University of Georgia (UGA) and the University of Florida (UF) hosted a virtual conference on April 27 providing updates from UGA Extension on citrus production in Georgia. Topics discussed during the meeting included current citrus production numbers in Georgia, tree sources, yield forecasts …

production

Georgia Also Opposes China Citrus Imports

Ernie NeffExport/Import, Georgia

Like several organizations in Florida, the Georgia Citrus Association (GCA) has asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to reverse its decision to allow fresh citrus from China into the United States. GCA President Lindy Savelle asked for the reversal and expressed “strong opposition” to the April 15 USDA decision in an April 17 letter to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture …

Reactions Vary on China Citrus Imports

Ernie NeffFresh

Representatives of the California and Florida fresh citrus industries had distinctly different reactions to the announcement that some fresh citrus from China can now be imported into the United States. California Citrus Mutual President Casey Creamer said, “We don’t anticipate any major disruptions in our fresh markets. It is not anticipated that much volume will come to the U.S.” But …

citrus greening

Georgia Citrus Groves at Risk

Ernie NeffHLB Management

Loundes County University of Georgia (UGA) Cooperative Extension Coordinator Jake Price recently provided huanglongbing (HLB) disease information and advice to the state’s citrus growers. “Greening (another name for HLB) is the big gorilla in the room,” said Price, who has helped producers with the growth of citrus in Lowndes County and surrounding areas. Georgia’s citrus industry launched in 2013 and …

Citrus Grower Sees Money-Making Opportunity

Tacy CalliesFlorida, Georgia

A grower is excited about the potential of citrus in the South Georgia/North Florida region. Kim Jones, who owns a citrus packing facility in Monticello, Florida, and is part-owner of a similar facility that will soon open in Tifton, Georgia, believes citrus will be the alternative crop producers are looking for to stabilize their farming operations. “Right now, the row …

North Florida Meeting Addresses Citrus Production Practices

Tacy CalliesProduction

By Clint Thompson Citrus was the focus of an annual meeting held in Quincy, Florida, on March 12. Growers from Florida and Georgia converged at the North Florida Research and Education Center to learn about various citrus management practices for the region. GROWER-GUIDED AGENDA Danielle Sprague, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension agent in Jefferson …

Freezing Temperatures Have Little Impact on Georgia Citrus

Tacy CalliesGeorgia

By Clint Thompson Last weekend’s freezing temperatures in parts of South Georgia had no effect on the state’s satsuma crop, according to Lindy Savelle, president of the Georgia Citrus Association. The bulk of Georgia’s citrus crop — 80 to 90 percent — is satsuma oranges, a cold-tolerant citrus that can withstand temperatures as low as 15 degrees Fahrenheit. Savelle said …

Georgia Citrus Association to Host Annual Conference

Tacy CalliesGeorgia

By Clint Thompson Georgia growers interested in adding citrus to their farming operation are invited to the fourth annual Georgia Citrus Association Conference on Monday, Feb. 24, at the University of Georgia (UGA) Tifton Campus Conference Center. Scientists from UGA and the University of Florida, as well as producers who are already growing citrus trees, will be in attendance to …

Florida

Georgia Citrus Industry Gaining Ground

Tacy CalliesCitrus, Georgia

By Clint Thompson Georgia’s citrus industry is expected to double in acreage by the end of 2020, according to Lindy Savelle, president of the Georgia Citrus Association. The projected increase from 1,000 to nearly 2,000 acres this year presents the growers with an interesting challenge as they prepare for when these trees start producing fruit. “We project by the end …

georgia citrus

Georgia Introduces New Satsuma Brand

Daniel CooperCitrus, Georgia, Industry News Release

(GDA) — Just in time for the holidays, shoppers can now add the Georgia citrus brand, Besties™ to their grocery lists. This month more than 1 million pounds of Georgia Grown satsuma mandarin oranges are going to market in major retailers, including Publix, Kroger, Walmart and Whole Foods. “Georgia has a great history of branding agricultural commodities into household names,” …

Inside Spain’s Citrus Industry

Tacy CalliesProduction

By Steve Futch and Ariel Singerman Editor’s note: The authors share what they learned while touring Spain’s citrus industry in March of 2017. Spain is the leading citrus producer in the European Union (EU) with approximately 300,000 acres that yield about 21 million boxes. FOCUS ON FRESH Production is primarily focused on the fresh market, with much fruit exported to …

Cold-Hardy Citrus for North Florida

Tacy CalliesVarieties

By Xavier Martini and Peter Andersen Cold-hardy citrus has a long history in North Florida, Alabama, Louisiana and Georgia. Records show that sweet orange, citron, lemon, lime and pummelo were brought to Saint Augustine, Florida, from Spain in 1565. However, it was not until the late 1700s that the Jesuits introduced satsuma (Citrus unshiu) to what is now Louisiana. SATSUMA …

Georgia Citrus Industry Poised for Growth

Tacy CalliesCitrus, planting

By Jaci Schreckengost Opportunities for Georgia citrus growers continue to rise as interest and research in the industry increase. Many stakeholders and industry leaders are pleased about the progress that has been made so far, but they are even more excited about what there is to come. “The industry basically started from nothing, so there was and still is a …

Diversification Possibilities for Cold-Tolerant Citrus

Jaci SchreckengostFreeze Protection, Top

North Florida and south Georgia citrus growers now have opportunities to diversify their crops and expand their season with cold-tolerant citrus varieties. Peter Andersen, a professor of horticulture at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences North Florida Research and Education Center in Quincy, said satsumas make up a majority of the citrus industry in the area. …

freeze

Irrigation Expected to Save Georgia Trees from Freeze

Ernie Nefffreeze

Most Georgia citrus growers believe microsprinkler irrigation will save their trees from a multi-day freeze that saw temperatures dip into the low 20s Friday morning, said Georgia Citrus Association President Lindy Savelle. “I think we’re going to do fine,” said Savelle, who ran microsprinklers virtually round-the-clock in her south Georgia grove because temperatures never got above 40 for five days …

Sweet Orange Scab Detected in Alabama

Tacy CalliesDiseases

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) officials have confirmed the first detection of sweet orange scab (SOS) in Alabama. The fruit sample was collected in Baldwin County by Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries’ (ADAI) plant protection inspectors during a delimiting survey for citrus greening disease. The Auburn University Plant Diagnostic Clinic provided the initial diagnosis of SOS, and USDA Animal …

A Look Back at 100 Years of Citrus Innovation

Tacy CalliesHistory

By Beverly James, Alec Richman, Brad Buck, Samantha Grenrock and Tom Nordlie The year was 1917. In April, the United States entered World War I. Florida’s population was fast approaching 1 million, and agriculture was the state’s most important economic driver. Citrus cultivation, introduced to Florida 400 years earlier by Spanish explorers, had spawned an industry following the Civil War. …

Georgia Prison Gets Citrus Plot

Tacy CalliesCitrus

By Tacy Callies With the recent birth of the Georgia Citrus Association (GCA), many small commercial citrus groves are getting started in the state. Georgia’s newest citrus planting, however, is not a commercial grove. It’s a 100-tree installation that was planted this spring at the Mitchell County Correctional Institute. Dubbed MitCo Grow by a 4-H student, the project is the …

Georgia Citrus Association Annual Meeting Set

Ernie NeffCitrus, Nutrition

The Georgia Citrus Association (GCA) will hold its annual meeting February 27 in Tifton, Georgia. The meeting will be conducted from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the University of Georgia (UGA) Tifton Campus Conference Center. GCA Vice President Andy Jackson expects more than 100 to attend the meeting, including growers and exhibitors. Topics will include crop diversification, packing and …