Hurricane Irma has delivered a heavy blow to Florida’s produce industry. What will it mean to the fresh produce industry over the next several months?
I asked this question on LinkedIn and I invite all of our Southeast U.S. and otherwise enlightened readers to respond:
Early signals appear to show that the citrus industry has absorbed heavy losses, perhaps more than 50%.
The latest coverage from The Packer is here. The extent of the storm damage can’t be communicated in a 500-word story, but a clearer picture of the fallout from Irma will come as more industry leaders share their stories.
Europe seems to be no closer - and in fact appears moving farther away - from embracing genetically engineered crops. Check out a USDA Foreign Agricultural Service report on the topic.
It is getting better all the time. Well, at least lately. The Census Bureau said yesterday that real median household income increased by 3.2% between 2015 and 2016, while the official poverty rate decreased 0.8%. Median household income in the United States in 2016 was $59,039, an increase from $57,230 in 2015. With 40.6 million people in poverty, the nation’s official poverty rate is 12.7%, about unchanged from pre-recession rate of 12.5%, the year prior to the 2008 recession. Those without health insurance declined from 9.1% in 2015 to 8.8% in 2016.
Check out a news release on Pagoda, a Chinese fruit retail chain that is expected to open 10,000 stores by 2020. 
One encouraging sign for U.S. fruit exporters, from the release: 
Compared to RMB 148 million of a sales volume in 2012, fruit imports are anticipated to grow to approximately RMB 4,500 million by the end of 2017, representing a development trend within China’s fruit market.
Your Amazon read for today from Harvard Business Review, Whole Foods Is Becoming Amazon’s Brick-and-Mortar Pricing Lab