1. Christopher Columbus brought the first citrus to North America in 1493.
  2. Early Spanish explorers planted the first orange trees in Florida the mid-1500s.
  3. Brazil is the largest producer of oranges, followed by the United States, Mexico, and China.
  4. Florida is second in global orange juice production.
  5. Oranges, along with other citrus fruits, have been produced commercially in Florida since the mid-1800s.
  6. While Florida leads in citrus production in the United States, California, Arizona and Texas produce citrus as well.
  7. Majority of the citrus grown in Florida is grown in the southern two-thirds of the peninsula, since it has lowest possibility for a freeze.
  8. Sub-tropical areas are ideal conditions for growing oranges. They must have enough sunshine with moderate to warm temperatures, about 60°F – 84 °F.
  9. There are about 569,000 acres of citrus groves in Florida, with over 74 million citrus trees.
  10. Most oranges are harvest by hand.
  11. Fresh orange season runs from October through June.
  12. Citrus produced for fresh consumption is sent be washed, graded and packed.
  13. Citrus grown for juice is taken to processing plants to extract the juice.
  14. In Florida alone, there are 40 citrus packing houses and 20 processing plants.
  15. More than 70% of America’s supply of citrus comes from Florida.
  16. More than 90% of orange juice in the United States is made from Florida-grown oranges.
  17. About 87% of Florida citrus is processed into canned, chilled, or frozen concentrated juices.
  18. The average American consumes 2.7 gallons of orange juice a year, making it the most consumed juice.
  19. The primary orange varieties in Florida are Navel, Hamlin, Pineapple, Ambersweet and Valencia.
  20. There are over 600 varieties of oranges in the world.

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Sources:
USDA
VisitFlorida.com
OhFact.com: Interesting Facts About Oranges

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