Also, with a possible delay of California’s season, Swords said Florida navels may find an opportunity.
“That little later crop will allow us to get more of a window and have more promotions in place for October,” he said. “We will have a good window and hope to be able to go into November with good promotional support.”
Swords said the early season should be favorable for retail promotions of 4- and 5-pound bags.
Lemon growers are also planning a 1-million-box increase in volume from California and Arizona.
For overall U.S. citrus, the USDA estimates 276 million equivalent boxes will be packed, up 6.5% from last year’s 258 million boxes and close to the deal’s 274 million box five-year production average.