Reversing a trend, the latest forecast Florida citrus production report shows gains in grapefruit and tangerine production, a drop in tangelo harvesting but steady production of oranges.
USDAThe latest USDA forecast for Florida citrus production shows gains in grapefruit and tangerine production, a drop in tangelo harvesting but steady production of oranges. The reversal follows declines of the Sunshine State’s citrus production since the U.S. Department of Agriculture first began reporting this season’s surveys in November.
In its Feb. 10 report, USDA estimates the state’s production of grapefruit and tangerines to increase by 3% each while tangelos are reported to decline by 20%.
While white grapefruit production remains consistent to the Jan. 10 forecast at 4.5 million equivalent cartons, the USDA increased red grapefruit production by 500,000 boxes to 12.5 million equivalent cartons.
The USDA reported droppage rates for both varieties being the highest in history and that final fruit sizes are slightly above the minimum.
In its row count survey, the USDA reported growers have completed harvesting 19% of white grapefruit and 36% of colored fruit.
Early tangerine production remains unchanged while the USDA bumped honey tangerine production up by 100,000 cartons to 1.7 million boxes.
Midseason oranges and late season valencia oranges remain unchanged at 115 million equivalent cartons.
Navel production is estimated at 1.9 million cartons, consistent with previous reports.
Growers are 87% finished harvesting navels, which ship predominantly fresh, while 75% of production of the early and midseason rows has completed harvesting, according to the USDA.
The USDA, however, cut its tangelo forecast by 200,000 boxes to 800,000 cartons.
Though majority of the state’s oranges ship to processed channels, 65% of its navels, 40% of its grapefruit and 63% of its tangerines ship fresh.
About 10% of the state’s 136 million equivalent cartons of citrus ship fresh, according to the USDA.