Study Says Hurricane Ian Dealt Florida Agriculture a Serious Blow
(AmericanProsperity.com) – The aftermath of Hurricane Ian, which initially made landfall on September 28, continues to devastate some areas. While many efforts focus on local impacts, an assessment released by the University of Florida showed some of the state’s losses could affect the entire country. Most notably, agricultural damage could result in higher prices at the supermarket.
IAN AFTERMATH – Florida's orange crop production will likely plummet to record lows this season thanks to Hurricane Ian, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said Wednesday. https://t.co/Snlo0DyfOq
— NBC2 (@NBC2) October 16, 2022
The hurricane obliterated nearly 5 million acres during its rampage. In addition to the large areas reserved for livestock grazing (which composed about 60% of the hardest-hit land), fields of citrus fruits, melons, and assorted vegetables also saw painful losses. The combined properties usually generate around $8.12 billion annually, but they’re likely to make substantially less this year thanks to heavy winds and persistent flooding.
Because of the losses, consumers can expect to pay even more for many of these products. Citrus fruits, which had already taken a hit in January, when many crops suffered due to an unusual freeze, are likely to see those losses compounded. Due to the shorter supply, orange juice and related products could become even more expensive in the coming year.
Nikki Fried, the agricultural commissioner for Florida, said the department is working with state and federal agencies to help farmers recover from their losses and get back on their feet.
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