Florida orange growers appear to be catching a break this year, following last year’s devastating hurricane season and declines due to citrus greening. The state may harvest 70 million boxes of oranges this year, compared to just 44.9 million last year, which was the smallest crop since 1945.
Highlands County Citrus Growers Association executive director Ray Royce told Bloomberg “a lot of trees are looking very good,” adding “things are turning around.” Hurricane Irma last year damages a significant portion of the crop.
If production forecasts hold true, this year would be the largest crop in three years. Over the last year, orange juice futures have jumped 17 percent. Even with the increased production, prices could still find support from falling production in Brazil at a time when U.S. demand is increasing.