2013-2014 Florida Citrus Crop Outlook

This is the time of year when the industry begins to ask the question: What is the outlook for next year? Here we will discuss the prospects for the upcoming season and reflect on the past season.

From The Ground Up

The big news of the 2012-2013 season is the major revisions that were made in the round orange crop forecast declining from an initial estimate of 154 million boxes in October to a final estimate of 133.4 million boxes that was released in July. It is safe to say this is the biggest change in the crop estimate that has taken place in the absence of a weather event such as a freeze or hurricanes.

The main culprit behind the smaller crop was much higher fruit drop. Even though USDA incorporates fruit drop into their forecast, the fruit drop realized this season was far above any level observed in the past. Many attribute the high level of fruit drop to HLB.

Southern Exposure

The other big news of the 2012-2013 season are events in Brazil. The USDA forecasted a crop of 390 million boxes for São Paulo, the main citrus producing state in Brazil and where most of the citrus processing takes place. This tally followed a near record crop of 420 million boxes in 2011-2012. In order to induce processors to handle the large 2011-2012 crop, the government of Brazil initiated a program known as Consecitrus in which processors agreed to pay a minimum price in exchange for financing of juice inventories to be held into the 2012-2013 season. When another large crop materialized in 2012-2013, this program backfired. Consequently, a large number of boxes were not harvested. Estimates are that 30 to 40 million boxes of fruit dropped to the ground. Juice inventories remain at very high level entering the 2013-2014 season. The USDA 2013-2014 crop forecast for São Paulo is 290 million boxes, which should help ease the oversupply situation there.

These factors would generally be considered to be a negative for Florida, but in the face of high juice availability in 2012-2013, Brazilian juice processors chose to maintain relatively high juice prices in Europe. We have seen increased imports to North America that have served to offset lower Florida production. Therefore, one could characterize the behavior of Brazilian processors toward Florida as neutral. In the 2012-2013 season, we saw rising delivered-in prices as the Florida crop estimate was reduced with a season average price of about $1.70 per pound solid.

The big question entering the 2013-2014 season centers on the issue of fruit yields. Bearing tree numbers will be down again, although not by a large amount. The low level of new plantings in recent years is insufficient to replace trees lost to normal attrition and HLB. If the high drop episode of 2012-2013 repeats in 2013-2014, then we could well see a crop of 130 million boxes and even higher delivered-in prices.

Author note: This article was written before the Steger and Dreyfus estimates were released. Therefore, I was not able to incorporate those numbers into my outlook.

Topics: , ,

Leave a Reply

Citrus Stories
CitrusBiocontrols 2015: Exhibition Sneak Preview
February 25, 2015
We take a look inside the exhibit hall at the Biocontrols 2015 Conference & Tradeshow. Read More
CitrusNew App Helps Identify Insects, Diseases, And Nutrient Deficiencies
February 24, 2015
Spensa Technologies launches app that helps growers take control of pests and improve soil nutrients. Read More
CitrusPacked Political Agenda On Tap For Florida Farmers
February 23, 2015
The Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association’s board of directors are working on a number of key issues that will be front-burner throughout 2015. Read More
CitrusWest Coast Governors Call For End To Port Labor Impasse
February 19, 2015
U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez helps mediate discussions between dockworkers and port operators. Read More
CitrusCompanion Biological Fungicide Now OMRI Listed
February 19, 2015
The biological fungicide from Growth Products is now registered for use in organic production. Read More
Varieties & RootstocksExperimental Florida Mandarins Measure Up
February 19, 2015
Variety display day results show Florida citrus research and development is on the right track. Read More
Insect & Disease UpdateScientists Cue Up 3D Printing In Quest To Quash Citrus Greening
February 18, 2015
Multidimensional technology used to build “SmartTrap” for vector of the disease. Read More
The Latest
Citrus18 Must-Have Apps For GenNext Growers
March 1, 2015
We asked about your favorite mobile applications, and here's what you had to say. Read More
FNV logo
CitrusPMA Announces Funding For Major Produce Marketing Progr…
February 26, 2015
The produce industry is getting into brand marketing in a big way. The Produce Marketing Association (PMA) has announced the launch of a new promotional campaign - FNV - designed to take a page from the marketing strategies of big-money consumer brands like Nike and Apple. Read More
CitrusFDA, Federal Partners Develop New Method For Attributin…
February 25, 2015
Data was analyzed from nearly 1,000 outbreaks to assess which categories of foods were most responsible for making people sick. Read More
CitrusBiocontrols 2015: Exhibition Sneak Preview
February 25, 2015
We take a look inside the exhibit hall at the Biocontrols 2015 Conference & Tradeshow. Read More
CitrusNew App Helps Identify Insects, Diseases, And Nutrient …
February 24, 2015
Spensa Technologies launches app that helps growers take control of pests and improve soil nutrients. Read More
CitrusPacked Political Agenda On Tap For Florida Farmers
February 23, 2015
The Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association’s board of directors are working on a number of key issues that will be front-burner throughout 2015. Read More
CitrusWest Coast Governors Call For End To Port Labor Impasse
February 19, 2015
U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez helps mediate discussions between dockworkers and port operators. Read More
CitrusCompanion Biological Fungicide Now OMRI Listed
February 19, 2015
The biological fungicide from Growth Products is now registered for use in organic production. Read More
CitrusNew Desalination Technology May Be The Answer To Califo…
February 18, 2015
Researchers plan to address concerns with a process that will examine ways to turn seawater into drinkable water. Read More
David Holden
CitrusBiopesticides, Biostimulants Show Results In Fruits And…
February 18, 2015
From biostimulants in celery and avocado to biopesticides in citrus and strawberries, consultant David Holden conducts in-the-field research that attests to the effectiveness of biocontrols. Read More
CitrusMegadrought In The West Predicted By End Of The Century
February 18, 2015
Lowering greenhouse gases will reduce risk, scientists say. Read More
CitrusIRS Change Could Pay Off In More Citrus Plantings
February 17, 2015
Florida Citrus Mutual is pushing a proposal forward that will allow growers to directly write off putting new trees in the ground. Read More
CitrusFlorida Citrus Poised For A Comeback
February 12, 2015
About halfway through the 2014-2015 season, and the crop could go either way. Read More
CitrusTier 4 Regulations Pique Propane Interest
February 12, 2015
New rules are extending to non-road applications like irrigation engines. Read More
CitrusSearch Is On For The Next Miss Florida Citrus
February 11, 2015
Pre-Miss America pageant makes its return offering contestants a chance to represent the industry and further their education. Read More
CitrusIs The ‘Agripocalypse’ Nearing? [Opinion]
February 10, 2015
Recent report indicates time is not on agriculture's side. Action is needed now to keep future growers engaged. Read More
CitrusFlorida Citrus Crop Holding On
February 10, 2015
Updated USDA forecast shows no change in orange and grapefruit yield. Read More
CitrusAgriculture Among Top Paying College Degrees Of 2015
February 9, 2015
Report reveals good news for graduates looking to make some green in farming. Read More