Citrus Forecast Down for Navel and Mandarin Varieties

Brian German Citrus

Citrus Forecast

California Citrus Mutual (CCM) is projecting a smaller citrus forecast for the coming season compared to initial estimates. CCM President and CEO Casey Creamer said the Marketing Committee is estimating a notable drop in production for the Navel and Mandarin crops. The Mandarin crop is expected to be down 45 percent from the 2020-2021 season. The total Navel orange crop is also believed to see a 24 percent decline from last season’s final utilized, or sold, production.

“I think as we’ve started off this season and some picking has happened, we feel pretty confident that we’re actually going to be below what the state of California has estimated for Navels and substantially down from last season,” Creamer noted. “We’re going to see Navel volumes, the lowest amount in over 10 years. So not as many Navels out there this year but the good thing is what’s out there is very, very good quality.”

The California Navel Orange Objective Measurement Report from the California Department of Food and Agriculture initially projected a crop size of 70 million cartons. The number would represent a decline of 14 percent from last season’s total utilized production.  Approximately four percent of the crop last season was not utilized. Last year’s sizable crop is partially responsible for the smaller citrus forecast, as trees can often produce smaller crop sizes following a heavy year.

“The other thing that we had last year, with the large volumes that we had especially on Navels, a lot of the crop wasn’t picked, and it was held on in the tree a lot longer than what it normally does. That puts more stress on the tree. You’ve got two crops on the tree at once. You’ve got the next year’s crop growing and the current crop is still sitting on the tree,” Creamer explained. “So that takes resources away from the tree and affected this year’s volume pretty significantly.”

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Brian German

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Ag News Director, AgNet West