The Pacific Regional Office of the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) conducts an acreage survey of California citrus growers as funding is available. The purpose of this survey is to provide bi-annual citrus acreage, which includes information on new plantings and removals. It is the continuation of a long series of industry-funded Citrus Acreage surveys.
Users are cautioned that this report consists of two parts:
– Table 1 shows estimated statewide bearing acreage for the 2017-18, 2018-19, and 2019-20 seasons.
-Tables 2, 3, and 4 show detailed acreage data by type, variety, and year planted — as voluntarily reported by citrus growers and maintained in NASS’ database.
With perfect information, the estimated statewide bearing acreage and the detailed acreage data would be the same. Generally, this will not be the case for the following reasons:
-A voluntary survey of approximately 5,400 citrus growers is unlikely to ever attain 100 percent completeness.
-It is difficult for USDA/NASS to detect growers who are planting citrus for the first time.
The major source of the citrus detailed acreage data was a questionnaire mailed to all citrus growers currently on NASS’ database. The mailing was made in January 2020 to approximately 5,400 citrus growers. The questionnaire contained previously reported crop, variety, and acreage information preprinted. Producers were asked to update the information with new plantings, removals, and any other corrections; and new growers were mailed a blank questionnaire. Growers were given about eight weeks to respond by mail. A telephone follow-up was then undertaken. Field personnel were unable to personally visit large growers who did not respond by mail because of social distancing requirements that have been in effect since March 2020.
To arrive at the estimated statewide bearing acreage, the NASS citrus acreage database was compared with pesticide application data maintained by County Agricultural Commissioners and the Department of Pesticide Regulation.
Thank you to the many orchard operators, owners, and management firms that provided their acreage information. Funding for the survey was provided by the California Citrus industry.