Florida Orange crop down nearly 8 percent, according to latest crop forecast

The reduction translates into a projected loss of $1.325 million in revenue for the FDOC.

BARTOW, Fla. – In the second forecast of the 2015-16 season, the National Agricultural Statistics Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture projected a decline in Florida’s citrus production.

The report predicts a nearly 8 percent drop in the state’s orange production, to 74 million boxes, with a slight decrease for grapefruit. The reduction translates into a projected loss of $1.325 million in revenue for the Florida Department of Citrus.

“This reduced forecast underscores the magnitude of the challenge facing the Florida Citrus industry,” said Shannon Shepp, executive director of the Florida Department of Citrus. “Our growers won’t stop working, the scientists won’t stop working, and, of course, neither will the Department. Given the dynamics with which we started this season, our staff has already engaged in budget reduction planning exercises. I am confident we will be able to adapt to the realities of a significant budget cut while also preserving the integrity of our programs and the service we provide our stakeholders.

The FDOC, which is funded by box taxes paid by the state’s citrus growers, serves as the chief marketing and promotion arm for the industry.

About the Florida Department of Citrus

The Florida Department of Citrus is an executive agency of Florida government charged with the marketing, research and regulation of the Florida citrus industry.  Its activities are funded by a tax paid by growers on each box of citrus that moves through commercial channels.  The industry employs nearly 62,000 people, provides an annual economic impact of nearly $10.7 billion to the state, and contributes hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenues that help support Florida’s schools, roads and health care services. For more information about the Florida Department of Citrus, please visit FloridaCitrus.org.