Florida has over 47,000 farms and ranches that utilize almost 10 million acres and continue to produce a wide variety of safe and dependable food products. Strawberry production in Florida is a $400-million industry and ranks second in the U.S. in the value of production for strawberries with a unique growing season window. Climate change will affect Florida strawberry yields by mid-century.
Climate change is impacting Florida agriculture
Climate change is having a real impact on U.S. agriculture. Increasing temperatures, water stress and changes in solar radiation are impacting yields, farming practices and supply security. This report describes four plausible scenarios with varying levels of overall production and winter yield.
In Hillsborough County, Florida, where most of the state’s strawberries are grown, growers can anticipate an 11% decline in the crop by 2050, and a 17% decline in early yields by 2050. Early yields are critical to making Florida strawberries competitive with strawberries grown in California and Mexico.
Climate adaptation can ensure Florida farms stay productive
This report identifies several adaptation strategies to mitigate the future effects of volatile weather on the state’s agricultural production, including investment in new shading technology and examining hybrid varieties.