The family-owned grower-shipper Fruit World of Reedley, CA has announced several bright spots in their 2022-23 citrus season in a season that has been difficult for many citrus growers,
Fruit World is expecting a large volume of high-quality organic lemons throughout their year-round program, with volumes peaking from mid-October through February. This year’s crop is even stronger than it was in 2021, which was also above average.
To ensure a steady year-round supply, the company grows in California’s desert region through March before transitioning to the Central Valley. This year’s volumes are also supported by several young blocks that kicked into production this season.
Fruit World’s flagship mandarin program started in late October and will continue into early May with organic mandarins available from mid-November through early May.
Conventional and organic mandarin volumes are both up from the 2021 season but are still down from typical yields. Extreme heat and irregular precipitation are the greatest challenges facing the industry this year, and growers have been pivoting as quickly as possible to adapt. Overall quality is strong, and a sizable portion of Fruit World’s conventional crop will be transitioning to organic in the 2023-2024 season.
Stem and leaf mandarins are seeing increasing shipments each year, and Fruit World has been building their program to meet the rush of popularity particularly during the holiday season.
Plentiful supplies are availble including Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Lunar New Year.
The company has also begun shipping the popular organic Rio Red grapefruits, known for their gorgeous interior color, fantastic flavor, and superb quality. Volumes and fruit size are down slightly compared to last season, but supply is still anticipated to be on par with a standard season and able to meet consumer demand into January.
Rounding out the organic specialty citrus program, Fruit World’s Sweet Limes are seeing increased interest.
The classic lime freshness paired with sweetness make this variety perfect for refreshing juices, bright salad dressing, and sweet treats. Good volumes are anticipated through mid-December.
As part of a continued growth strategy for the Fruit World brand, the company has brought several new grower relationships online in the past year, which are expected to make a positive impact on this year’s citrus season.
Navel oranges, which are experiencing 15% to 20% lighter volumes industry-wide will actually end up with an increased supply for Fruit World over last year, thanks to more growers. Likewise, Fruit World welcomed the next generation of growers for Cara Caras from an up-and-coming grower family who are eager to convert the crop to organic.
The brand is also continuing to forge ahead with new product lines—exciting additions like mandarinquats, kumquats, and their newly-planted lemonade lemons.