Florida's Orange Output Seen Lower by USDA, Yields Seen Rising

The orange crop in Florida, the world’s second-largest citrus producer, will be 3.2 percent smaller than forecast last month, the government said.

In the 12 months that started Oct. 1, the state’s output will be 121 million boxes, compared with 125 million projected in November, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said today in a report.

Yesterday, orange-juice futures entered a bull market because of the dry conditions and citrus greening, a disease that starves trees of nutrients, causing fruit to shrink and drop prematurely. The price climbed 2.3 percent to $1.412 a pound, up 20 percent from the settlement of $1.175 on Oct. 22.

Nine analysts in a Bloomberg survey forecast output at 125 million boxes on average, unchanged from a month earlier. Last season, Florida’s crop was 133.6 million boxes. Through yesterday, futures advanced 20 percent this year.

Yields for frozen concentrated orange juice will average 1.61 gallons per box, up from 1.59 gallons a year earlier, the USDA said today.

A box weighs 90 pounds, or 41 kilograms. Brazil is the top citrus grower.

To contact the reporter on this story: Marvin G. Perez in New York at mperez71@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Millie Munshi at mmunshi@bloomberg.net

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