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Florida citrus negatively affected by Irma

13 October 2017

"This may, temporarily, mean less Florida Orange Juice on grocery store shelves and a corresponding price increase", she said, without elaborating on how much the price hike will be.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's first estimate for this season's orange crop in Florida - and its first since Hurricane Irma - was made too soon, is too high and probably inaccurate, according to an unusual rebuke from the state's largest growers organization.

He went on to explain that he had concern's with the USDA's forecast, specifically that it does not "accurately estimate the damages to our industry, given that groves are still under water and fruit is still dropping from trees".

In the wake of Hurricane Irma, Commissioner Putnam announced that Florida citrus sustained more than $760 million in damages. "There is no group of people more stubborn or more resilient than Florida's growers, and we will get through this together".

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In a widely followed report, the USDA said output in Florida will plunge 21 percent to 54 million boxes in the season that began October 1, a 71-year low. The total grapefruit forecast is for 4.9 million boxes, with whites at 900,000 and colored at 4 million boxes.

"The long-term effect of Irma on our industry will take years to sort out", Sparks said.

The California forecast is also lower than last year at 35.0 million boxes (1.40 million tons), down 11 percent from last season's final utilization, while the Texas all orange forecast, at 1.65 million boxes (70,000 tons), is up 20 percent from last year.

Florida citrus negatively affected by Irma