“El Niño sucks.” These were the opening remarks given by Doug Bournique, executive director of the Indian River Citrus League, during the official welcome to last week’s 2016 Florida Citrus Show at the Havert L. Fenn Center in Ft. Pierce. He was referring to the torrent of rainfall and wind that greeted everyone attempting to make it into the building without getting soaked. Looking around the room, not many were successful in dodging the opening day deluge.
The inclement weather was quite symbolic of the current, ongoing challenges the Florida citrus industry is facing. Similar to the resolve being shown in the fight against HLB, more than 800 people (a new Show record) packed the facility despite the forecast calling for continued driving rain with a chance of occasional tornadoes.