In a season that has been difficult for many citrus growers, the family-owned grower-shipper Fruit World has announced several bright spots in their 2022-23 citrus season. In particular, Fruit World is expecting a large volume of high-quality organic lemons throughout their year-round program, with promotable volumes peaking from mid-October through February. This year’s crop is even stronger than it was in 2021, which was also above average.
“We’re seeing exceptional volumes and beautiful fruit this season,” shared CJ Buxman, co-founder of the company and director of supply. “To ensure a steady year-round supply, we grow in California’s District 3 desert region through March before transitioning to the Central Valley’s District 1. This year’s volumes are also supported by several young blocks that kicked into production this season.”
Fruit World’s flagship mandarin program is on track to start slightly earlier than last season, with conventional fruit shipping from late October into early May and organic mandarins available from mid-November through early May. Conventional and organic mandarin volumes are both up from the 2021 season, but are still down from typical yields. Climate change conditions including extreme heat and irregular precipitation are the greatest challenges facing the industry this year, and growers have been pivoting as quickly as possible to adapt. Overall quality is strong, and a sizable portion of Fruit World’s conventional crop will be transitioning to organic in the 2023-2024 season.
Stem and leaf mandarins are seeing increasing demand year-over-year, and Fruit World has been building their program to meet the rush of popularity particularly during the holiday season. “We will have plenty of supply for our main promotional periods, including Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Lunar New Year,” said co-founder and CEO, Bianca Kaprielian. “We’re continuing our special packs from last season under the Lucky Tiger label, and will start shipping prior to Thanksgiving through early May.” Fruit World stem and leaf mandarins will be available in 4-lb clamshells, 10-lb boxes, and standard half-bushel boxes.
The company has also begun shipping the popular organic Rio Red grapefruits, known for their gorgeous interior color, fantastic flavor, and superb quality. Volumes and fruit size are down slightly compared to last season, but supply is still anticipated to be on par with a standard season and able to meet consumer demand into January.
Rounding out the organic specialty citrus program, Fruit World’s Sweet Limes are seeing increased interest, as consumers and retailers become more familiar with the fantastic flavor profile. The classic lime freshness paired with sensational sweetness make this variety perfect for refreshing juices, bright salad dressing, and sweet treats. Promotable volumes are anticipated through mid-December; the fruit is currently available in 1-lb bags, though special packs are available to fit any retailer needs.
As part of a continued growth strategy for the Fruit World brand, the company has brought several new grower relationships online in the past year, which are expected to make a positive impact on this year’s citrus season. Navel oranges, which are experiencing 15% to 20% lighter volumes industry-wide will actually end up with an increased supply for Fruit World over last year, thanks to more growers. Likewise, Fruit World welcomed the next generation of growers for Cara Caras from an up-and-coming grower family who are eager to convert the crop to organic.
The brand is also continuing to forge ahead with new product lines—exciting additions like mandarinquats, kumquats, and their newly-planted lemonade lemons—ensuring lively, well-rounded citrus seasons for years to come.
For more information or to place an order, call (559) 650-0334 or visit fruitworldco.com.
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About Fruit World
Fruit World is a fresh and creative produce company with generations of history. Fruit World grows and ships the most flavorful fruit in California—including organic and conventional citrus, organic grapes, organic stone fruit, and more—and works with customers who share a passion for quality and taste. They’re all about honoring their growers, staying true to their farming heritage, and keeping family farming thriving into future generations. Visit fruitworldco.com.