Posts Tagged “Texas citrus shipments”

South Texas Citrus Shipments Should be Similar to a Year Ago

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Texas Citrus Mutual of Mission, TX reports fresh citrus shipments should be similar to last season.

The trade association expects the industry expects to ship about 4.5 million cartons of grapefruit and 2 million cartons of oranges.

South Texas citrus harvest began in October with peak loadings of Texas citrus typically running from November through March.

Although the crop may be close last year, this is about 50% of a 20-year average. Growers are taking out older trees and planting younger trees. Quality is reported as very good.

Texas has three major fresh citrus shippers and a couple of smaller companies. Fresh shippers Lone Star Citrus and The Wonderful Company. both of Mission, TX, also have juice plants.

According to USDA reported numbers, Texas grapefruit-bearing acreage declined from 16,400 acres in 2017 to 10,500 acres in 2023.

Orange-bearing acreage also decreased, from 8,000 acres in 2017 to 5,900 acres in 2023, according to USDA data.

Within oranges, USDA numbers reported mid/navel variety acreage went from 5,800 acres in 2017 to 3,600 acres in 2023.

Valencia orange acreage declined slightly, from 2,200 acres in 2017 to 2,300 acres in 2023, according to USDA numbers.

While real estate development of citrus groves continues, some growers in Texas are in the early stages of investing in sophisticated growing technology, including growing citrus under protective screens, called the CUPS method.

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Citrus Shipping Forecast is Lowered by USDA Estimate

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The USDA July 12 crop production report showed reductions in 2022-23 estimates for oranges, grapefruit and lemons but an increase for tangerines.

The July report said the U.S. all-orange forecast for the 2022-23 season is 2.52 million tons, down 1% from the previous forecast and down 26% from the 2021-22 final utilization. The Florida all-orange forecast, at 15.9 million boxes (714,000 tons), is up 1% from the previous forecast but down 62% from last season’s final utilization.

In Florida, early, midseason and navel varieties are forecast at 6.15 million boxes (277,000 tons), unchanged from the previous forecast but down 66% from last season’s final utilization. The Florida valencia orange forecast, at 9.70 million boxes (437,000 tons), is up 1% from the previous forecast but down 58% from last season’s final utilization.

The California all-orange forecast is 44 million boxes (1.76 million tons), down 2% from the previous forecast but up 13% from last season’s utilization, the report said. The California navel orange forecast is 37 million boxes (1.48 million tons), unchanged from the previous forecast but up 17% from last season’s utilization. The USDA said the California valencia orange forecast is 7 million boxes (280,000 tons), down 14% from the previous forecast and down 8% from last season’s utilization.

The Texas all-orange forecast, at 1.13 million boxes (48,000 tons), is up 8% from the previous forecast and “up significantly from last season’s utilization,” the report said.

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South Texas Citrus Shipments are Bouncing Back after 2 Rough Seasons

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Following two disappointing years, Texas citrus is expected to rebound this season, although it certainly will not be setting any records.

Texas Citrus Mutual reports for the 2022-23 season, growers are expecting a strong harvest after two years stymied by extreme weather which included a hurricane one year and a freeze another year.

Lone Star Citrus Growers is a family-owned, conventional grapefruit and orange packing shed based in Mission, Texas.  The company hopes to have 80 percent of a normal crop a year from now, which would be the 2023-24 season.

While no official numbers are being reported as yet, Texas’ Rio Grande Valley had about 2 million 85-pound boxes of oranges in 2019 and around 1.5 million boxes in 2020. Grapefruit shipments were about 5.7 million 80-pound boxes in 2019 and 4.9 million cartons in 2020. Around 40 percent of both oranges and grapefruit go to the fresh market.

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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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Domestic Citrus Loadings are Increasing after Slow Start

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U.S. citrus shipments should be up this season in most growing areas compared to last year, and despite challenges in some areas, growers contend they are shipping some good-quality fruit.

During the late fall in California, the navel orange season got off to a rough start.

The San Joaquin Valley was unusally hot last summer, where most of the state’s oranges are grown. At one point, temperatures topped 100 degrees for more than 30 days straight, which shut down the trees.

As a result, sizing on the fruit, especially the early varieties, was unusually small.

Rainfall around Thanksgiving and in December and early January was helping to improve fruit size. Early this season, citrus growers nationwide had to deal with Southern Hemisphere fruit lingering in the domestic market for longer than usual. There was plenty of questionable quality.

This resulted in October, November and December being sluggish.

But as supplies of imported citrus wound down and domestic movement picked up, markets seemed to be improving. Market improvements finally arrived with the New Year.

Florida’s citrus industry still is recovering from the effects of Hurricane Irma, which hit the state in September 2017, wiping out a large part of the orange and grapefruit crops.

During the 2017-18 season, the state shipped only 45 million 90-box equivalents of oranges, 3.9 million boxes of grapefruit and 750,000 boxes of tangerines.

Hurricane season now is over for Florida growers, but they’re keeping their fingers crossed until March or so, when the threat of freezes should be over.

Up to 95 percent of the Florida’s oranges are grown for processing.

Citrus movement in Texas started off a bit slower than usual this season, mostly because of the large amount of imported fruit remaining the in the distribution pipeline, which slowed shipments. While loadings picked up for Christmas, volume still was behind the previous season.

Still, Texas citrus shipments should be greater this season than last.

Lower Rio Grande Valley citrus, plus Mexican produce crossings – grossing about $4800 to New York City.

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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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Citrus Shipments from the Nation’s Top Three States Expected to be Down

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AA1Overall citrus shipments from the nation’s three leading states are expected to be lower this season for various reasons.

California citrus shipments of navel oranges and lemons will be down this season.  It also means lighter than normal loadings towards the end of the season, and perhaps shipments ending sooner than usual.

California is expected to ship 35 million boxes of navel oranges, down 11 percent from the 2016-17 season.   While California lemon volume should remain about this same this season at about 20.5 million boxes, it will be lower than normal.

Southern California citrus – grossing about $8000 to New York City.

Florida Citrus Shipments

In Texas, grapefruit has received a lot of interest after Hurricane Irma significantly reduced volume from Florida.   Florida will probably ship about 4.65 million boxes of grapefruit, down more than 40 percent from the 2016-17 season.  Florida grower-shippers have had a tough time, with Hurricane Irma estimated to have caused at least $760 million in losses to the citrus industry there.

Shipments are down 40 percent to 55 percent depending on grove location.  Quality also has been an issue due the hurricane winds that really beat up the fruit, as well as weakening the trees.

Imports from Mexico and Morocco have resulted in Seald Sweet of Vero Beach, FL filling gaps left by Florida citrus, and the company has been bringing imported fruit into its Florida packinghouse.

Duda Farm Fresh Foods of Oviedo, FL reports its orange volume is down an estimated 29 percent, grapefruit off by 65 percent and tangerines and mandarins plunging by 80 percent.  Duda’s grapefruit shipments that usually continue into March, ended in early January.

Duda has an import program as well, including clementines from Morocco.

Texas Citrus Shipments

Texas grapefruit shipping estimates have been lowered from 5.3 million boxes to 4.1 million boxes.  Shipments are ahead of estimates, with about 56 percent of the overall crop remaining to be shipped, compared to 68 percent the same time in 2017.    Loadings by truck, however, should stay strong through the spring.

Lower Rio Grande Valley citrus – grossing about $3400 to Chicago.



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Shipping Updates: RRV Potatoes Down; CA Strawberries; Texas Citrus

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dscn8448Updated estimates continue to show fewer Red River Valley potatoes for hauling this season, plus here’s a look at California strawberry loads and Texas citrus.
Fall Potato production in North Dakota is 20.8 million hundredweight, down 25 percent from 2015, according to the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. Yield, at 325 hundredweight per acre, is down 20 hundredweight from a year earlier. Area harvested, at 64 thousand acres, is down 16 thousand acres from 2015.
 Potato production in Minnesota was 16.7 million hundredweight, up slightly from 16.2 million last year. Average yield jumped from 400 hundredweight per acre in 2015 to 430 in 2016.  40,000 acres were planted, only 1,000 acres were not harvested according to NASS. 
Red River Valley potatoes – grossing about $1700 to Chicago.
California Strawberry Shipments
January rains in California may have disrupted the harvest and shipments of strawberries, but the welcome moisture should bode well in the weeks and months ahead.  Volume is building out of Ventura County leading up the popular St. Valentine’s Day, February 14th.  Oxnard shipment should continue through April.  In the meantime, light volume from the Watsonville area as well as Santa Maria will start in March.
Strawberries and vegetables from Ventura County – grossing about $6200 to New York City.
Texas Citrus Shipments
Citrus acreage in Texas is expected to increase from 27,000 acres this year to as much as 30,000 acres by next year, despite challenges like citrus greening and the Mexican fruit fly.

Most of the state’s citrus are Texas red grapefruit varieties, but there also are early and mid-season oranges, navels and valencias.

The season has been progressing smoothly and orange shipments should continue through March and possibly into April.

The firm started grapefruit in early November and expects to continue through April.

Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas grapefruit, oranges and imported Mexican vegetables  and tropical fruits- grossing about $2500 to Atlanta; $2800 to Chicago and $4200 to New York City.



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Citrus Shipping Outlook for Florida, Texas and California

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DSCN7158A small decrease is expected for Florida citrus shipments this season, while increases are projected for California and Texas.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates in its Jan. 12 report that  Florida orange shipments will 71 million 90-pound boxes, one million less than expected in the USDA December forecast, a decrease of about 1 percent.

Loadings for midseason and navel varieties remains unchanged at 36 million boxes, but the forecast for the later valencia oranges is now 35 million, down about 3 percent from the earliered total of 36 million.  These small changes are considered normal for season to season.

The good news is observers believe the citrus industry is gaining ground on fight citrus greening disease (huanglongbing) as new trees are now being planted.

The overall forecast of 71 million boxes of Florida oranges is 13% less than last season’s production.

Florida is projected to ship 9 million 85-pound boxes of grapefruit, off about 3 percent from the December forecast, with the expectation for red grapefruit steady at 7.3 million boxes and the outlook for white down from 2 million to 1.7 million.

The projection for tangerines and tangelos in Florida was up slightly to 1.52 million boxes from 1.5 million in the December forecast.

Southern and Central Florida citrus, strawberries and vegetables – grossing about $2400 to New York City.

California Citrus Shipments

California is expected to ship 53 million 80-pound boxes of oranges, up about 5 percent from the December forecast of 50.5 million. The state is expected to ship 44 million boxes of non-valencia oranges and 9 million boxes of valencia oranges. In December, the forecast was for 42 million boxes of non-valencias and 8.5 million of valencias.

The Golden State is expected to produce 4.1 million 80-pound boxes of grapefruit, up 2.5 percent from the December prediction of 4 million.

Forecasts for lemon shipments were down nearly 5 percent in California, from 21 million 80-pound boxes to 20 million, and down nearly 14 percent in Arizona, from 1.8 million to 1.55 million.

The expectation for California  tangerines and tangelos was unchanged at 23 million boxes.

Southern California citrus, tomatoes and kiwifruit – grossing about $3900 to Chicago.

Texas Citrus Shipments

The Lower Rio Grande Valley of  Texas, should ship 1.45 million 85-pound boxes of non-valencias, up from a December projection of one million, a 45 percent increase.  The forecast for 350,000 boxes of valencias was unchanged from last month.

The USDA projected Texas production will be 5.3 million 80-pound boxes, up nearly 13 percent from the December forecast of 4.7 million.

In the last 10 seasons, the January citrus forecast for the various regions has deviated from final production by an average of 5 percent, ranging from 15 percent below production to 10 percent above production.

South Texas citrus, Mexican tropical fruit and vegetables – grossing about $2800 to Chicago.

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Fewer National Citrus Shipments Seen This Season

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dscn4665Fewer total U.S. citrus shipments are seen this season from the leading states of Florida, California and Texas.

Florida’s first forecast for citrus shipments reveals a continued decline across all varieties with grapefruit and navel oranges expected to be among the lowest levels in history.  The U.S. Department of Agriculture on October 12th forecast Florida to ship 81 million equivalent cartons of oranges, grapefruit and specialty fruit or tangerines, down from 94.1 million boxes last season.

The Sunshine state is expected to move 70 million 90-pound cartons of oranges with navel oranges amounting 1 million cartons.  Navels are predicted to be three percent lower than last season and the lowest since the 1979-80 season when the USDA began separate navel forecasts.

Regarding grapefruit, Florida should ship 9.6 million 85-pound cartons, down 11 percent from the 2015-16 season and the lowest level in 50 years.  As for tangerines, early season fallglos, midseason sunbursts and later season honeys are forecast to decline as well.

The USDA report forecast 7.5 million boxes of red grapefruit and 2.1 million boxes of white grapefruit.

California Citrus Shipments

California orange loadings are forecast to be down from 54.2 million 80-pound cartons last season to 50.5 million cartons this season.  The state’s grapefruit shipments are forecast to increase from 3.8 million 80-pound cartons last season to 4 million cartons for 2016-17.

Texas Citrus Shipments

Texas orange shipments are seen falling from 1.7 million 85-pound cartons in 2015-16 to 1.4 million cartons this year.  With grapefruit, Texas shipments are forecast to decline from last season’s 4.8 million 80-pound cartons to 4.7 million cartons this season.

25 years ago or so , there were 30 shippers and packers of Texas grapefruit and oranges operating the Rio Grande Valley and shipment citrus across the U.S. as well as exporting.  Today, there are only three shippers.

Worldwide citrus grower are concerned about citrus greening,  the primary reason for the decline in Florida citrus volume.   In Texas,, the crops have not been affected by the disease.  However, observers point out Florida didn’t feel the decline [in volume and tree health] until the sixth year after greening was discovered.   Texas is now entering its sixth since green was discovered in the Lower Rio Grande Valley.  A lot of folks are holding their breath and taking a wait and see attitude.



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