Florida Orange Crop Ravaged by Irma

Leslie Patton, owner #2871

AdobeStock_67198710 (1).jpeg

The Florida orange crop has been seriously hurt by Hurricane Irma -- the state's harvest is expected to be the lowest in about 70 years, the government said. That's sent U.S. retail prices soaring to the highest in more than a decade, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which tracks food prices. This means shoppers are likely seeing price hikes at the grocery store. In November, prices were up about 20 percent compared with last year.

Farmers in Florida weren't able to reach their crops during the storm, which dumped 17 inches of rain on some areas in just a day. Orange trees were damaged and fruit fell to the ground and was unable to be harvested.

Brazil, however, is helping to make up for the shortage. The South American country, the world's largest grower of oranges, will keep prices in check. The Brazilian harvest is projected to be better this year due to favorable weather, according to the U.S. government. While still up compared with last year, November navel orange prices dropped from their high in October. 

Stock up on citrus at Dill Pickle, with blood oranges and clementines featured as Fresh Deals this week!