Hurricane Irma plundered Florida's orange belt, leaving a trail of uprooted trees, downed fruit and flooded groves worse than anything growers say they have seen in more than 20 years.
It could even be the knock-out blow for a product—orange juice—that has been slipping in popularity among Americans, although the beverage still ranks as the country's favorite fruit.
The most recent estimates of the widespread damage to Florida's orange trees put the statewide losses as high as 70 percent. That could lead to orange shortages, price hikes and, for farmers, lost harvests—all on top of a debilitating plant disease called citrus greening and a long-term national decline in orange juice consumption.
To read the full original article, please click here.