SACRAMENTO -The California Department of Food and Agriculture’s Agricultural Statistics Service has released the latest crop production forecasts for October. The survey, conducted during the first week of October 2001, includes the following commodities:
Grapes - Production of all grape varieties for the 2001 season is forecast at 5.90 million tons, down 16% from last season. Raisin grape production is 2 million tons, down 31%, while the table grape production forecast is 800,000 tons, up 3% from last year. Wine grapes are forecast at 3.10 million tons, down 8%. Picking of Thompson Seedless variety grapes was still active in late September. The weather conditions for wine grapes have been ideal and harvest has progressed rapidly. More than 80 percent of the raisin crop was picked up and in bins by the end of September.
Oranges - The 2001-02 California orange crop is forecast at 108 million cartons, down 8%. California’s Navel orange forecast is 64 million cartons, down 11%. Picking of early season Navel orange varieties is expected to begin in mid-October. Fruit set per tree is lower than any previous year on record, but individual fruit size is large. California’s Valencia orange forecast is 44 million cartons, down 4% from last season.
Grapefruit - California’s grapefruit forecast is estimated at 12 million cartons, down 8% from last season. Marsh Ruby and Star Ruby grapefruit are reported to be in good condition with large sizes.
Cotton - American Pima cotton is forecast at 560,000 bales, unchanged from the September 1 forecast and up 62% from last year. Harvested acreage is estimated to be 209,000, resulting in a yield of 1,286 pounds per acre. Upland cotton is 1.90 million bales, up 3% from the September 1 forecast and down 14% from last year. Harvested acreage is estimated to be 655,000, resulting in a yield of 1,392 pounds per acre. Cotton production progressed well during the summer after a rough start in the spring. Planting started in the San Joaquin Valley in mid-March, but cool and wet weather in March and early April caused a large amount of acreage to be replanted. Warm weather this summer has helped cotton rebound and insect pressure from most pests has remained at manageable levels, although aphids and whiteflies were beginning to affect quality in some areas. Harvest began in the Imperial Valley around the second week of September, while harvest began in parts of the San Joaquin Valley during the last week of September.
Others - The lemon forecast is 46 million cartons, up 1%; tangerine forecast is 5 million cartons, up 19%; pecan production forecast is 3.10 million pounds, down 9%. The corn for grain production is at 880,600 tons, down 21%; alfalfa hay is at 7.27 million tons, up 2%; other hay production is at 1.70 million tons, up 19%; and the rice crop is at 37.2 million cwt. with a yield of 7,900 pounds per acre from 471,000 harvested acres.
California’s Agricultural Statistics Service operates under a cooperative agreement between CDFA and the United States Department of Agriculture. Production forecasts are released on a monthly basis and do not reflect final production estimates. Late summer and fall harvests may change these estimates considerably. The next production forecast will be issued November 9, 2001.
California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Public Affairs
1220 N St., Ste. 214, Sacramento, CA 95814