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São Paulo and West-Southwest Minas Gerais citrus belt

Total orange production for the 2023-2024 crop season at 307.22 million boxes

The 2023-2024 orange crop for the São Paulo and West-Southwest Minas Gerais citrus belt, published on April 10, 2024, by Fundecitrus – performed in cooperation with Markestrat and full professors from FEARP/USP and FCAV/Unesp – concluded with 307.22 million boxes of 40.8 kg each (90 lbs), divided as follows:

  • 58.09 million boxes of the Hamlin, Westin and Rubi early-season varieties;
  • 18.51 million boxes of the Valencia Americana, Seleta, Pineapple and Alvorada early-season varieties;
  • 97.62 million boxes of the Pera Rio mid-season variety;
  • 105.20 million boxes of the Valencia and Valencia Folha Murcha late-season varieties;
  • 27.80 million boxes of the Natal late-season variety.

Of the total, about 27.82 million boxes were produced in the Triângulo Mineiro region. The season´s production was 2.22% lower in comparison to the previous crop, which reached 314.21 million boxes and was 0.69% below the initial forecast made in May 2023. The determining factor for the production decrease about to the initial expectation was the shift from a rainy first semester in 2023 to a precipitation deficit in the subsequent semester, extending until the end of the season in 2024. Beyond adverse weather conditions, the production decrease was also influenced by the worsening of citrus greening and a hastened harvest pace, which shortened the oranges' development period.

This confluence of factors resulted in fruits smaller than expected, particularly for mid-season and late varieties. Although the accelerated harvest pace posed challenges to fruit growth, it did yield a positive outcome by reducing losses attributed to premature fruit drop.

All these factors were considered in the December 2023 crop forecast update, when the production volume was revised to 307.22 million boxes. This update resulted in an increase of 2.27 million boxes of oranges from early varieties, which benefited from abundant rains in the first semester, but a decrease of 4.39 million boxes from other varieties, including Pera Rio, Valencia, Valencia Folha Murcha, and Natal, which were impacted by reduced rainfall and increased temperatures in the second semester of 2023. Adverse conditions, including irregular rainfall, extreme temperatures, heatwave episodes, and increased evapotranspiration, intensified from July 2023, shortly after the onset of the El Niño phenomenon in June of the same year. This phenomenon reached a strong intensity and remained active until the end of the harvests.

Click here to read the full report.


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