Minimum Changes: USDA Updates Citrus Crop Forecast

Clint Thompson Citrus, Florida, Top Posts

Reductions in the projected Florida grapefruit and tangerine/tangelo crops were the only changes in the May 12 U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) citrus crop forecast. USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) reduced Florida’s grapefruit crop projection by 2%, to 4.2 million boxes, down from 4.3 million boxes in April. The total 100,000-box reduction was in red grapefruit, which dipped to …

UF Strawberry Breeder: We’re Shifting A Lot of Effort Toward Neopestalotiopsis

Clint Thompson Florida, Georgia, Strawberry, Top Posts

By Clint Thompson Yield and quality remain at the forefront of Vance Whitaker’s focus as University of Florida/IFAS strawberry breeder. But not far behind is Neopestalotiopsis Fruit Rot. “We always have to pay attention to yield and quality, but we’re definitely shifting a lot of effort toward it for sure,” Whitaker said. “It certainly has leapfrogged, probably most traits, at …

Year Two for Florida Hemp

Clint Thompson Florida, Hemp, Top Posts

By Clint Thompson One year into commercial production, hemp continues to flourish in popularity in Florida. According to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS), there are 895 licenses issued, equating to 1,086 locations and 22,755 permitted acres in 65 of Florida’s 67 counties. In April, 109 licenses were added, and more is expected this month, says Holly …

field hearings

Florida Farmer: Consumer, Ultimately, Will Have to Pay for This

Clint Thompson Florida, Produce, Top Posts

Freight costs have doubled. Input prices have risen. These increased expenses will have a snowball effect, believes Florida watermelon farmer Laura Land. Land said the pallet shortage is a serious shortage and a serious problem, especially as she prepares for the upcoming harvest for her North Florida watermelons. She still doesn’t have enough pallets to ship on with harvest less …

Supply Shortage: ‘It’s Going to Get a Whole Lot Worse Before it Gets Better’

Clint Thompson Florida, Georgia, Top Posts

By Clint Thompson One Florida farmer dodged the supply shortage that’s running rampant across the vegetable industry. But the fall season is not that far away for Wade Purvis, who farms in Immokalee, Florida and is part of the Farmers Alliance. “I know guys that are literally buying sawmills and going out in the woods, cutting logs and starting to …

Waiting for Watermelons: North Florida, South Georgia Crop Delayed by Weather

Clint Thompson Florida, Georgia, Top Posts, Watermelon

By Clint Thompson A delay in harvest for North Florida watermelons would normally spell doom for producers in that region hoping to avoid a collision course with South Georgia producers. But that’s not the case this year. Branford, Florida producer Laura Land said most producers are expecting to harvest at least week than they normally would, due to cooler temperatures. …

Beneficial Insects Another Tool in Toolbox for Citrus Producers

Clint Thompson Citrus, Florida, Pests, Top Posts

By Clint Thompson Beneficial insects could be a citrus producer’s best friend. In a time when farmers are applying insecticides to control Asian citrus psyllids, the vector of citrus greening disease, it’s important to preserve the psyllid’s natural enemies, like lady beetles and lacewings. Jawwad Qureshi, University of Florida Assistant Professor in Entomology, implores growers to scout their groves periodically …