The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has released its April orange crop forecast for the 2010-2011 season, showing no change to the 142 million box crop.

“Today’s crop forecast is a reflection of the industry’s year-to-date harvest, as well as what we anticipate seeing through the rest of the season,” said Mutual EVP/CEO Michael W. Sparks. “What’s not reflected in this forecast is any fruit loss that may have occurred during the end-of-March storms that ripped through much of the citrus growing region.”

Visit http://www.nass.usda.gov/Statistics_by_State/Florida/Publications/Citrus/cpfp.htm for the complete USDA estimate. The USDA makes its initial forecast in October and then revises it monthly until the end of the season in July.

The 142 million box forecast is made up of 70 million early and mid-season varieties, and 72 million Valencias.

For Florida specialty fruit, the USDA’s tangelo estimate increased by 50,000 boxes to 1.15 million boxes, while the tangerine forecast increased by 100,000 boxes to 4.5 million.

The USDA estimate for grapefruit remained unchanged at 19.6 million boxes.

The all variety yield for from frozen concentrated orange juice (FCOJ) rose from 1.57 to 1.58 gallons per 90-pound box. The Valencia yield increased from 1.62 gallons per box to 1.65 gallons per box.

The Florida citrus industry creates a $9 billion annual economic impact, employing nearly 76,000 people, and covering about 560,000 acres. Founded in 1948 and currently representing nearly 8,000 grower members, Florida Citrus Mutual is the state’s largest citrus grower organization. For more information, visit http://www.flcitrusmutual.com.