Posts Tagged “Florida citrus shipments”

Florida Orange Shipments to be Lowest Since the 1940s

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Florida is expected to produce 44.5 million boxes of oranges this year, which would be the smallest since the 1944-45 season when 42.23 million boxes were produced, according to the USDA. This will be an even smaller crop than when Hurricane Irma hit Florida several years ago.

Citrus disease and poor growing conditions are the primary factors. Meanwhile, demand for orange juice, which has been declining for years, has increased during the pandemic.

The result is higher orange juice prices, and those increasing costs are expected to continue: Frozen orange juice futures have surged more than 50% during the pandemic.

The anticipated spike in orange juice prices comes as consumers are already facing inflation across multiple sectors. The US consumer price index rose 7% over the past year before seasonal adjustments, the steepest climb in prices since June 1982, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported recently.

Over the past year, food consumed at home was 6.5% more expensive while prices at restaurants rose 6%. Fruit juice and nonalcoholic drink prices have already spiked 5.7% this year, and orange juice futures are up.

Florida supplies most of the country’s orange juice, but supplies have been dwindling for years. 

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Florida Citrus Shipping Forecast is Once Again Adjusted Downward

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The updated Florida citrus shipping forecast released by the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service reveals a decline.

All Oranges 44.5 Million Boxes
The 2021-2022 Florida all orange forecast released today by the USDA Agricultural Statistics Board is 44.5 million boxes, down 1.50 million boxes from the December forecast. If realized, this will be 16 percent less than last season’s final production.

The forecast consists of 17.5 million boxes of non-Valencia oranges (early, mid-season, and Navel varieties) and 27.0 million boxes of Valencia oranges. A 9-year regression has been used for comparison purposes. All references to “average”, “minimum”, and “maximum” refer to the previous 10 seasons, excluding the 2017-2018 season, which was affected by Hurricane Irma. Average fruit per tree includes both regular and first late bloom.

Non-Valencia Oranges 17.5 Million Boxes
The forecast of non-Valencia production is lowered 500,000 boxes to 17.5 million boxes. Final fruit size is close to the minimum, requiring 326 pieces to fill a 90-pound box. Final droppage of non-Valencia oranges (excluding Navels) at 39 percent is close to the maximum. The Navel forecast, included in the non-Valencia forecast, is unchanged at 450,000 boxes, and is 3 percent of the
non-Valencia total.

Valencia Oranges 27.0 Million Boxes
The forecast of Valencia production is lowered 1.00 million boxes from the December forecast to 27.0 million boxes. Current fruit size is close to the minimum and is projected to be close to the minimum at harvest. Current droppage is above average and projected to be above average at harvest.

All Grapefruit 4.10 Million Boxes
The forecast of all grapefruit production is unchanged from December at 4.10 million boxes. If realized, this will be equal to last season’s final production. The red grapefruit forecast is held at 3.30 million boxes. Fruit size of red grapefruit at harvest is projected to be average, and droppage is projected to be average. The white grapefruit forecast is unchanged at 800,000 boxes. Projected fruit size of white grapefruit at harvest is above average. White grapefruit droppage is projected to be below average.

Tangerines and Tangelos 800,000 Boxes
The forecast for tangerines and tangelos is reduced 100,000 boxes from December and is now 800,000 boxes, 10 percent less than last season’s utilization of 890,000 boxes. This forecast number includes all certified tangerine and tangelo varieties.

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Florida Looking at Strong Citrus Shipments with High-Quality Crop

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Florida citrus growers see good volume shipments this season, despite a USDA forecast for a smaller production of all oranges and grapefruits.

Florida Classic Growers of Dundee, FL report excellent fruit color, especially Florida navels. 

Noble Worldwide of Winter Haven, FL started harvesting the second week of September and expects to harvest through May and ship through June or July.

DLF International of Fort Pierce, FL notes they began picking at the end of September and will run through the first part of July using a cold storage program at the end of the season.

DLF has similar volume to last season, but overall fruit quality has improved.

Seald Sweet of Vero Beach, FL, has volume matching last year because of the good growing conditions and weather. Florida citrus movement is expected to be strong in part because Texas grapefruit volume is limited due to a freeze last February.

Continued efforts to manage citrus greening is another factor leading to increased quality crop, Parris said.

DFL reports while East Coast demand is about the same as last year, and there has been an increase in business in the Midwest.  DFL also is also expanding its orange and grapefruit businesses.

According to the USDA, overall U.S. citrus production for the fresh market is estimated at 3.45 million tons in 2020-21, down 6% from the previous season, with smaller fresh-market crops of oranges (down 11%), grapefruit (down 15%) and lemons (down 6%).

The USDA’s October forecast for Florida’s production of all oranges was down 11% from last season with grapefruit production down 7% and all tangerine and tangelo production up 1%.

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Decrease in Florida Citrus Shipments Seen for this Season

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U.S. citrus shipments show mixed results in comparison to December’s estimate for the 2020-21 season.

The USDA January forecast for oranges for December’s forecast showed volumes of all variants decreasing by 11.3 million boxes from the 2019-20 season to 56 million boxes.

January’s figures continued with this decreasing trend, reporting the national production total will likely be two million boxes fewer at 54 million. Additionally, calculations specifically for Florida’s non-Valencia orange shipments is predicted to be down nine percent, showing loadings dropping from 22 million in December to 20 million this month.

Florida’s Valencia orange volume remained unchanged at 34 million boxes. Current fruit size is below average and is expected to stay that way at harvest.

Forecasted grapefruit shipments from December were also down from last year’s numbers by 450,000 boxes. However, January’s numbers break from the trend with a predicted five percent or 200,000 box increase.

If realized, this increase will still be 5% less than last season’s final grapefruit shipments.

Following suit, estimates in California and Texas for the current year increase 400,000 and 100,000 boxes, respectively. Meanwhile, January’s forecast for tangerine and tangelo production remained unchanged at 1.1 million boxes, 8% more than last season’s 1.02 million boxes.

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Fewer Florida Orange, Grapefruit Shipments Coming this Season

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Lower Florida orange and grapefruit are expected this season compared to a year ago.

The USDA’s prediction of 57 million boxes of Florida oranges and 4.5 million boxes of Florida grapefruit means a 15 percent decrease in Florida orange production and 7 percent decrease in Florida grapefruit shipments compared to the 2019-20 season,

However, specialty citrus volumes is expected to be up slightly this season over last with 1.1 million boxes forecasted.

Much of the production drop is expect to be from for juice, rather than the fresh market, according to Florida growers.

DLF International of Fort Pierce, FL, expects to ship 1.6 million cartons of citrus for the fresh market, which is about 15 percent more than the previous season.

DLF produces about 90 percent oranges, but is looking to increase its grapefruit program, to possibly 30 percent of its product line.

Shipping got underway September 20 and is expected to finish in July, although grapefruit should wrap up in April because it doesn’t use cold storage.

Valencias do well in cold storage for part of June and July with barely 1 percent discards once pulled out and resorted

 Duda Farm Fresh Fresh Foods of Oveido, FL., reports company’s navel crop is expected to show larger sizes and bigger volume than last season.

The company’s grapefruit crop should be very similar to last year, with the potential for greater packouts and potentially slightly more volume.

The firm’s juice orange crop is expected to be very similar to last season, with potentially lighter overall volume. One bright spot is specialty citrus. 

The company began shipping grapefruit, specialties and oranges The third week of October, and navels began Nov. 2.

Grapefruit shipments will peak in January and February and continue through March. Specialties began their peak before Thanksgiving and will continue with peak volume through Christmas.

Florida Classic Growers of Dundee, FL., started packing its first Florida citrus in October with Florida hamlin juice oranges, fallglo and early pride tangerines, as well as navel oranges.

By mid-November, tango tangerines were in full force.

New in 2020 is a partnership with Riverfront Packing Co., the Packers of Indian River and Quality Fruit Packers Inc. Good volumes of grapefruit are expected through mid-March.

After the first of the year, Florida Classic will transition from early season orange varieties to its valencia orange crop, which should be in good supply and available to the end of May.

The honey tangerine crop will start then too, running through early March.

Seald Sweet LL of Vero Beach, FL., expects similar volume of Florida volume compared with last season. The company began packing in late October and was in peak volume by mid-November.

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California, Florida, Texas Citrus Shipments are Showing an Increase

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With the absence of major hurricanes, storms, heatwaves or freezes in California, Florida or Texas citrus shipping areas, growers are reporting good quality.

The January 10 citrus crop estimate from the USDA forecasts a harvest of 125.5 million boxes of oranges for the current season, up from 124 million last year.

The grapefruit forecast is 15.7 million boxes, up from 13.8 last season.

Lemon and tangerine production is down.

Growers are expected to ship 20.4 million boxes of lemons, compared to 24.1 million in 2018-19, and 23 million boxes of tangerines, down from about 27 million last year.

Booth Ranches LLC of Orange Cove, CA is in full swing harvesting, packing and shipping navel oranges, The company expects to wrap up navel shipments by late June and is reporting excellent quality and color.

Limoneira Co. of Santa Paula, CA is picking lemons in California’s San Joaquin Valley and in the coastal region. The operation reports good quality.

Florida Citrus Shipments

Florida Classic Gowers Inc. of Dundee, FL will transition from navels to valencias in mid-February and continue shipping those through May. Then the summer storage orange shipments will get underway, continuing through June.

Florida Citrus Mutual of Lakeland, FL reports a good citrus shipping season and expects it to continue through the second half of the season.

Texas Citrus Shipments

Texas Citrus Mutual of Mission, TX sees good quality with Lower Rio Grande citrus being shipped out of South Texas. Product is split with 70 percent of the citrus volume consisting of grapefruit and 30 percent oranges.. The company was completing their navels and early variety shipments in mid January, and was planning to start valencias in February,

Lone Star Citrus Growers, Mission, TX reports good quality grapefruit, although volume is down from last season, but with larger sized fruit.


Lower Rio Grande Valley citrus as well as Mexican produce crossings – grossing about $3200 to Chicago, about $5700 to New York City.

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National Citrus Shipping Report is Looking Favorable

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Good volume citrus shipments are expected this season from California and Texas, but the big news could be this may be the year of a turn around for Florida, which has been clobbered in recent years by citrus greening and hurricanes.

Florida citrus shipments may be up a little this year, and that may be a big deal.

The first recently released forecast by the USDA shows a moderate increase in Florida citrus shipments during the 2019-20 season.

The USDA’s first estimate for 2019-20 Florida orange loadings is 74 million boxes, up 3.4 percent from last season. The agency projected Florida grapefruit volume at 4.6 million boxes for the 2019-20 season, up 2 percent from the previous crop. Florida’s combined tangerine and mandarin crop is forecast at 1.05 million boxes, 6 percent higher than a year ago.

“This incremental increase is good news for the industry as we continue to recover from Hurricane Irma and the devastating effects of citrus greening,” Michael Sparks, executive vice president and CEO of Florida Citrus Mutual, said in a news release. “We believe that this number — if it holds throughout the year — will strike a nice balance of getting the processors the oranges they need while firming up prices to the Florida citrus grower.”

Sparks said growers are slowing building output after declines caused by citrus greening disease pressures.

“We are not out of the woods but we are making gains,” Sparks said in the release.

The USDA issues its first estimate in October of each year and revises it monthly during the harvest until the end of the season in July.

“This reflects what we’ve been hearing from growers,” Shannon Shepp, executive director of the Florida Department of Citrus, said in a release. “Florida Citrus is here to stay.”

That sentiment was echoed by Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried.

“Today’s forecast reflects the resilience of Florida’s citrus growers, dedication to the citrus industry, and commitment to innovation in the face of challenges,” Fried said in the release. “Citrus is Florida’s signature crop, and we’re committed to supporting our citrus producers with new research, technology, and techniques to fight the spread of citrus greening.”

California, Texas Shipments 

In California, navel orange shipments are predicted to be at 47 million boxes, down 6 percent from last season’s final estimate.

The California valencia orange forecast is 9 million boxes, unchanged from last season. Texas orange Volume is forecast at 2.70 million boxes, up 8 percent from a year ago.

Meanwhile, the combined tangerine and mandarin forecast for California is 23 million boxes, down 12 percent from last season.

Grapefruit loadings in California is forecast at 4.2 million boxes, up a whopping 32 percent compared to last season.

Texas grapefruit shipments are projected at 5.7 million boxes, down 7 percent from last year.

Lemon volume in 2019-20 is forecast at 20 million boxes in California, 12 percent less than last season. Arizona lemon output is pegged at 1.4 million boxes, 4 percent higher than last season.

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Estimates: California Valencia Shipments; Florida Citrus Shipments

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California Valencia orange shipments for the season remain unchanged in the USDA latest forecast, while there is a mixture of changes in the estimates for Florida citrus shipments, depending on the items.

The USDA is forecasting the California Valencia orange shipments at 19 million 40-pound cartons, the same as the final utilized production of valencias in the 2017-18 season.

The state’s bearing acreage is 29,000, the same as the most recent season.

The growing season had mostly dry weather early, but rainy throughout February. The average number of fruit per tree, 573, is 9 percent greater than last season, and above the 5-year average of 568.

Data was collected from 349 groves, primarily in Tulare, Kern, Fresno, Ventura and San Diego counties.

Florida grapefruit shipments dropped 10 percent for the current growing season in Florida, while the orange volume remains steady.

The USDA reports Florida remains on pace to ship enough oranges to fill 77 million 90-pound boxes — the industry standard — during the current season.

Meanwhile, growers are on pace now to fill 5.4 million boxes of grapefruit, which is down from 6 million boxes projected in February.

Also, projections of specialty citrus such as tangelos and tangerines, which declined by 16.7 percent over the first 2 months of the year, fell another 5 percent in the latest forecast, from a projection of 1 million boxes in February to 950,000 boxes.

Despite the lower projections for grapefruit and specialty fruit, the industry appears headed to an improvement over the past two growing years.

Hurricane Irma in 2018 devastated the 2017-2018 crop, resulting in just 49.58 million boxes of oranges, grapefruit and other citrus.

During the 2016-2017 season, meanwhile, Florida had 68.7 million boxes of oranges.

The recent figures pale for an industry that two decades ago produced more than 200 million boxes of citrus a year. The industry continues to struggle against citrus greening disease, development pressures and a change in drinking habits.

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U.S. Citrus Shipments Crashed in 2017-18 Shipping Season

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A17U.S. citrus shipments crashed big time in the 2017-18 season.

American citrus loads plunged to 6.13 million tons last season, down 20 percent compared with 2016-17 season, and a whopping 66 percent less than the record high production of 17.8 million tons in 1997-98, according to the USDA.

Total fresh U.S. citrus shipments in 2017-18 were 3.308 million tons, off 7 percent from 2016-17 and 13 percent below 2015-16.

California represented 87 percent of all U.S. fresh citrus shipments in 2017-18, compared with 7 percent from Florida, 5 percent from Texas and 1 percent from Arizona.

Florida accounted for 36 percent of total U.S. citrus loadings, compared with 59 percent for California. Texas and Arizona shipped the remaining 5 percent.

Florida Citrus Shipments

Thanks to citrus greening disease and Hurricane Irma in 2017, Florida’s citrus volume continued to plunge in the 2017-18 season.

Florida’s orange shipments stood at 45 million boxes last season, which was down 35 percent from the previous season. Grapefruit volume in Florida, at 3.88 million boxes in 2017-18, crashed by 50 percent from the previous season.  Florida’s total citrus shipments decreased 37 percent from the previous season, the USDA said.

Fresh shipments of Florida citrus were rated at 221,000 tons, down 30 percent from 317,000 tons in 2016-17 and off 50 percent from 2015-16.

Bearing citrus acreage in Florida, at 400,900 acres in 2017-18, was 9,800 acres below the 2016-17 season.

In California, the USDA reported citrus loadings dropped 7 percent from the 2016-17 season. California’s total orange shipments, at 45.4 million boxes, was 6 percent lower than the previous season. The state’s grapefruit volume was down 9 percent from the 2016-17; tangerine and mandarin loadings were off 19 percent.

California’s fresh citrus shipments was 2.88 million tons in 2017-18, down 5 percent from 2016-17 and down 9 percent from 2015-16.
In Texas, loadings of citrus was up 9 percent  from the 2016-17 season. Orange volume is up 37 percent from the previous season, but grapefruit volume was unchanged.

Texas citrus shipments was 175,000 tons in 2017-18, up 8 percent from 2016-17 and 11 percent higher than 2015-16.

Arizona lemon loadings in 2017-18 was down 35 percent from last season.  Arizona fresh citrus shipments was 32,000 tons in 2017-18, down 29 percent 2016-17 and down 32 percent from 2015-16.

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Big Jump in Florida Citrus Shipments are Forecast; U.S. Also is Up

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A20Florida citrus shipments for the 2018-19 season is forecast at 86.9 million boxes, a 75 percent increase from last year’s Hurricane Irma damaged crop, according to the USDA.

Citrus shipments are still far below Florida’s peak volume of 244 million boxes during the 1997-98 season.

“This citrus production forecast offers a glimmer of hope to Florida’s iconic citrus industry,” said Adam Putnam, Florida Commissioner of Agriculture, in a statement. “For more than a decade, we’ve battled citrus greening and the industry most recently was dealt a devastating blow last year from Hurricane Irma. This estimated increase in production is the much-anticipated good news that Florida’s growers have hoped for. Much work remains, but the citrus industry is strong and here to stay.”

Florida’s forecast for all oranges is set at 79 million boxes for 2018-19, up an impressive 76 percent from 44.95 million boxes in 2017-18, notes the USDA.

For grapefruit, the USDA forecast Florida shipments at 6.7 million boxes in 2018-19, up 72 percent from 3.88 million boxes from 2017-18.  Florida red grapefruit shipments was 5.5 million boxes, up from 3.18 million boxes last season.

Florida tangerine/mandarin shipments for the 2018-19 season is 1.2 million boxes, up from 60 percent from last season.

California and Texas

California growers and shippers also are expecting to ship more volume.

The California navel orange shipments for 2018-19 is 49 million boxes is up 8 percent from last season’s final shipments. The California valencia orange forecast is 9 million boxes, down 5 percent from last season’s final utilization. The Texas all-orange shipping forecast is at 2.4 million boxes, is up 28 percent from last season’s final utilization, the USDA said.

The U.S. 2018-2019 grapefruit shipments are is forecast 33 percent higher than last season’s final utilization. In Texas, expected production of 6.2 million boxes is up 29 percent from a year ago.

The forecast for the 2018-2019 U.S. lemon crop is down 4 percent from last season’s final shipments. California volume forecast is at 20 million boxes is off 6 percent from the 2017-2018 season.

The USDA said the U.S. tangerine and mandarin crop is forecast up 22 percent from last season’s final loadings. California tangerine and mandarin forecast, at 23 million boxes, is up 20 percent from the previous year.

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