William Couch

The U.S. Department of Agriculture forecasts a roughly 6 percent drop in Florida orange production compared with last year. Orange growers are contending with a variety of challenges that have plagued them for the last decade.

Crop projections released Friday reflect long-term crop losses due mostly to citrus greening disease. Andrew Meadows is spokesman for Florida Citrus Mutual, a trade association representing 8,000 growers. He says, despite orange production falling by half in ten years, the industry remains optimistic.