BARTOW, Fla – This afternoon’s citrus forecast, issued by the National Agricultural Statistics Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture for the 2014-2015 citrus crop, matched the orange and grapefruit predictions from the October forecast precisely. [PDF: 2014-15 November Crop Estimate]
The November forecast kept Florida orange production at 108 million boxes and Florida grapefruit production at 15 million boxes.
Florida Department of Citrus executive director Doug Ackerman responded to the data by welcoming the consistency and insisting the Department remains focused on the task at hand: “In recent years, the most predictable dynamic has been unpredictability, so it’s encouraging for our growers to see this stability, month-to-month. Today’s forecast represented continued reason to believe that the hard work the growers have invested in their groves, combined with favorable growing conditions, is paying off.”
According to FDOC’s chief economist, Marisa Zansler, “It is still very early in the season, but if variables such as fruit size and drop rate remain favorable, today’s forecast provides another reason for confidence in the numbers we used to start the season. Obviously, we’ll continue to monitor the crop going forward, but continuity at this point is a good thing. What remains clear is the need to rebuild infrastructure lost as a result of citrus greening by leveraging recently announced tree-planting programs and ongoing research efforts to fight greening and recover production capacity.”
Ackerman noted that the Department will continue to move forward with the aggressive PR and marketing programs called for by the industry.
About the Florida Department of Citrus
The Florida Citrus Commission is the governing board of the Florida Department of Citrus, an executive agency of the Florida government charged with the marketing, research and regulation of the Florida citrus industry. The commission is a nine-member board appointed by the governor to represent citrus growers, processors and packers. FDOC activities are funded by a tax paid by growers on each box of citrus that moves through commercial channels. The industry employs nearly 76,000 people and provides an annual economic impact close to $9 billion to the state. For more information about the Florida Department of Citrus, please visit FloridaCitrus.org.