Citrus growers react to federal suspension of rule to inspect grapefruits from Mexico
The U.S. Department of Agriculture placed a suspension on the inspection requirements of grapefruits from Mexico, sending shockwaves through much of the citrus industry.
"Still not sure as to why they did it, more importantly — why did they do it without any warning to industry,” Dale Murden – president of the non-profit Texas Citrus Mutual – said. “Neither Florida nor Texas nor California was aware of it."
The suspension happened as growers throughout the Valley work to bounce back from the big freeze earlier this year. Citrus product for this season is only about 30% of what is normally produced.
Because of that change, the Center for North American Studies at Texas A&M University states that more than 85% of citrus that would normally be rejected for sale is now making i's way into the U.S.
While growers like Murden will continue to be held to a standard with their grapefruits as a result of state law, the worry now is if more changes could be made to other types of citrus - potentially giving Mexico even more of an edge.
Watch the video above for the full story.
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