The 2023 U.S. orange crop is suffering. USDA has forecasted production to be the smallest since 1937. The decline has been an ongoing trend since production peaked 25 years ago, although this year stands out as a particularly devastating drop.
Even so, the U.S. remains a net exporter of the citrus fruit, although exports have slowed to match domestic demand for orange juice. USDA pegs the 2022-2023 orange crop at 62.25 million boxes, a 23% fall from last year.
For perspective, that is less than 20% of the total U.S. output in the 1997-1998 season. The cause? Florida continues to grapple with citrus greening disease, which has caused the state’s production to plunge, in tandem with severe damage from Hurricanes Ian and Nicole last year.
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