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Orange Juice faces double whammy

By Lisa Abraham Published: January 12, 2012

News over the past 24 hours doesn't bode well for orange juice and what we will be paying for it at the grocery store in upcoming months.

Yesterday, reports came out that frigid temperatures in Florida, which produces the world's second largest crop of oranges, did more damage that was first expected to orange groves. Orange juice futures had their biggest increase since 2006.

Then today, the AP is reporting that the FDA is investigaing juice from Brazil, which grows the world's largest orange crop, due to levels of a fungicide being found in juice from that country. The fungicide, carbendazim, that is not approved for use in the U.S.

Coca-Cola alerted the FDA in December that its testing of its own products (Coke produces the Simply Orange and Minute Maid brands) and some of its competitors, showed low levels of the fungicide. Pepsico produces Tropicana orange juice.

Most orange juice that we get in the grocery store contains a blend of juice from various sources, including Floida, Brazil and other countries.

The FDA is saying that the low levels aren't a safety risk, but that testing will continue to make sure contamination isn't a problem. The agency has halted imports of Brazilian juice until further testing can take place.

The price of orange juice futures has doubled in trading over the past two days, which will translate to all of us having to pay more for our morning shot of sunshine and Vitamin C.




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