Crop Yield, Quality, and Size All Exceeding Forecasted Levels.
Sweet Valley Citrus Region — Halfway through the selling season and Satsuma mandarins and other cold hardy varietals are still in abundant supply according to the Cold Hardy Citrus Association (CHCA). Growers had predicted this year’s harvest would be favorable at the season’s start, and the groves are producing beyond those early expectations. “We are seeing good quality, bigger size, and lots of volume left to pick on trees, especially for Satsumas,” shared Kim Jones, current President of the CHCA.
That means availability and shipping should continue for another four to six weeks Jones advised. Retailers who already ordered this year, such as Whole Foods, Rouses Markets, Publix, Aldi and many others will continue to enjoy steady supply and sales of some of the season’s most popular citrus varietals. However, with such a large bumper crop now available, it’s not too late for other retailers to still place orders.
“People love Satsumas because they are sweet, seedless, and easy-to-peel, making them perfect to eat at any time,” added Jones. “This year’s harvest is showing high brix levels that equate to maximum sweetness.” Consumers also value the local farm story and seek out these special seasonal varieties. The growing region in North Florida, and southern parts of Alabama and Georgia also enjoyed favorable growing conditions this spring and summer, with just enough rainfall and no adverse weather conditions, which has also had a positive impact on the fruit.
In addition to the Satsuma crop, the CHCA has also advised that Cara Cara oranges, as well as Tango, Kishu, and Shiranui mandarins are also at peak quality and are continuing to ship now through January. “Trees are still producing beautiful fruit with plenty of time left for ripening on the tree as we head into cooler weather. These are ideal conditions for nearly all cold-hardy citrus varietals, and we expect growers will keep delivering excellent quality all the way through to the end of the season,” said Jones.