08 Feb How Florida Citrus Farmers are Fighting Back
France 2 News traveled to our citrus groves in Vero Beach to learn more about how IMG Citrus is facing the challenges posed to Florida’s farmers by Citrus Greening and the damage left in the wake of Hurricane Matthew in 2016 and Hurricane Irma earlier this year.
Due to fruit losses from Hurricane Irma and Citrus Greening, IMG Citrus is learning to be more lean, running our Packinghouse at top efficiency and doing more with less fruit. Our state-of-the-art systems help us to assess fruit quality using sensors and digital photography, flagging damaged fruit with incredible accuracy and helping us find the juiciest, sweetest fruit without ever breaking out a grapefruit spoon.
Citrus Greening has been present in Florida since 2005 and has more recently been discovered in California and Texas. It has no effect on humans or animals, but starves citrus trees of nutrients and damages their roots. We have been working directly with universities and researchers to prolong the life of trees affected by Greening through tailored nutritional supplements delivered directly to the tree’s roots by water-conscious drip irrigation. In addition, we are continuing to plant and redevelop citrus groves. We planted 23,000 trees this year and plan to plant 100,000 trees over the course of 2018.
The challenges in the citrus industry are real, but they’re pushing us to grow, innovate, and find new ways to grow the world’s best citrus. By learning to make the most of the fruit we have, reinvigorating our legacy groves, and developing young groves, we’re planning for a bright future.