Survey results suggest packout will fall short of 2021/22 season

A heavily set crop will impact fruit sizing for Californian Valencias this season, according to the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

Valencia oranges

The department released its 2022/23 California Valencia Orange Objective Measurement Report this week, which is based on a production survey conducted from 9 January to 28 February.

The report forecast this season’s packout at 16.2m cartons, down on last year’s final total of 17.2m packed cartons.

Survey data indicated an average fruit set per tree of 616, a 13.9 per cent increase from the previous year and 12.2 per cent above the five-year average of 549.

The average 1 March diameter was 2.39 inches, down 2.8 per cent from the previous year and 5.1 per cent below the five-year average of 2.52.

The survey was based on a sample of 375 Valencia orange groves, which were randomly selected proportional to acreage, county, year planted, and variety representation in the state, with 340 of these groves being utilised in this survey.