Summer is quickly succumbing to fall, and farmers are preparing to harvest one of autumn's favorite treats. No, I'm not talking about apples, although production seems to be on the rise. And no, I'm not talking about pumpkins, the Halloween and Thanksgiving staple. I'm talking about cranberries.read more
Multiple salmonella outbreaks have been in the news lately. Most recently, the CDC reported 73 cases of salmonella linked to Kellogg's Honey Smacks cereal. The outbreak reached 31 states and resulted in 24 hospitalizations.read more
Hurricane Irma was not kind to Florida's citrus industry, which was already besieged by dwindling production and citrus greening disease. In an effort to defend Florida's iconic agricultural industry, both federal and state government programs are working to protect this year's crop.read more
U.S. consumers enjoy bananas just as much as anyone, but I was surprised to see that Japan is also one of the biggest banana-devouring nations in the world. The country relies upon imports for over 99% of its banana consumption due to its climate, and every year, the Japanese import some 1 million tons from the Philippines and other tropical countries.read more
It's a Wednesday morning in December, and that can mean its a pretty dry day in the news when it comes to fresh fruit and veggies. Sure, there are always some interesting stories coming through this week (including the tantalizing deregulation of the Innate snowden potato, and this story about...read more
The news hasn't been very good for bees in recent years. Colony collapse disorder, an epidemic that some have argued is curtailing as of late, alarmed bee keepers who found loss rates above 19% more and more regularly within their hives. Despite the press that the disorder generated, scientists are still at a loss to find the root cause of the syndrome that affected the bee keeping industry. By now, most people know that...read more
The projected crop for Florida grapefruits was dropped by over 10% in USDA’s March estimate. USDA reduced the 2014-15 projected Florida grapefruit crop by 2 million boxes to 13 million boxes, a 13% drop from its March estimate and one that will produce the smallest crop in a season unaffected by hurricanes since 1935-36.read more
It's certainly not over, but farmers and food producers may receive a few months' respite as tariffs in the Sino-U.S. trade war will not escalate for 90 days. Additionally, they can at least look forward to a new normal as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) moves forward to full ratification.read more
USDA officials unveiled details regarding the Wildfires and Hurricane Indemnity Program (WHIP) at meetings in Florida the week of July 2. The program, which will include about $2.6 billion worth of funding, is expected to help the state's citrus producers that are dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, which struck the state Sept. 10 and Sept. 11, 2017, reported The Ledger (July 4).read more
Now, more than ever, the issue of food waste is top of mind for the food industry. Despite retailers, foodservice operators and manufacturers trying to tackle it head on, many challenges lurk around the corner. Despite this, innovative and impactful approaches abound to tackle this complex...read more
In my time as the Food Institute's fresh produce analyst, one trend never seems to slow down. That trend would be the rising consumer demand for organic products in general, but especially in the fresh produce sector. And in 2017, consumers pushed that trend to a new record.read more
In just over a week, families across the U.S. will be sitting down for a Thanksgiving meal that features turkey, mashed potatoes and a variety of other American staples. I know my family will be enjoying an apple pie made by my father, so I felt inspired to take a look into the current situation in the apple industry.read more
For the better part of the year, avocados have been hard to come by. Despite high volumes and great prices for consumers in 2015, 2016 hasn't been kind to the popular super-fruit. Weather and labor disputes decreased production significantly in 2016, and prices rose in response. But is the end to the avocado shortage in sight?
Regarding the labor shortage, picking resumed in Mexican...
The avocado is an interesting fruit, a hold-over from a time long past. The seed is too large for most of today's animals to properly disperse, and for two million years it barely survived on the backs of rodents before the Aztecs began cultivating them for food. Today, the avocado's existence is again...read more
The Major League Baseball season is about two weeks underway, and although the campaign is still very young, I lament the fact that I must give credit to the Red Sox organization. No, it has nothing to do with their 19-inning win against the Yankees last Friday. Rather, it has more to do with the new organic vegetable garden they...read more
The rise of the avocado can be considered "meteoric" as the sun-loving green fruit has become a staple of the American diet due to its versatility. The food can be included with eggs for breakfast, as a spread for a lunchtime sandwich, in a salad for dinner or as guacamole for a snack. However, the rise is also due in no small part to...read more
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