Statement by Commissioner Adam Putnam on Final Citrus Crop Forecast

Aug 03, 16 Statement by Commissioner Adam Putnam on Final Citrus Crop Forecast

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam released the following statement today after the U.S. Department of Agriculture released its final citrus crop forecast for the 2015-2016 season:

“Today’s final citrus crop forecast is yet another reminder of how far our state’s signature crop has fallen. Production is nearly 70 percent lower than it was 20 years ago, and the long-term future of Florida citrus depends on a breakthrough in the search for a long-term solution to greening.”

The USDA’s forecast of 81.5 million boxes of oranges, up from 81.4 million boxes last month, represents a decline of nearly 70 percent since the peak of citrus production at 244 million boxes during the 1997-98 season.

In support of Florida’s growers and industry groups seeking approval from the EPA for the use of certain antimicrobial treatments to combat greening, Commissioner Putnam issued a crisis declaration this spring regarding their Section 18 application to the Environmental Protection Agency, which allowed the immediate use of these treatments.

In addition, Commissioner Putnam helped secure more than $24 million in state funding this past legislative session to continue critical research and support Florida’s citrus industry.

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