New citrus BMPs come with new grower requirements

04/05/2013 06:35:00 PM
Vicky Boyd

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services formally adopted the Water Quality/Quantity Best Management Practices for Florida Citrus manual Jan. 9.

The action brought the industry into compliance with state water quality standards and related water resource protection program goals, according to a news release.

With the all-industry BMPs also come a few changes.

Growers who were enrolled under one of the previous flatwoods citrus GMP manuals do not have to re-enroll under the new manual unless they re-established a grove or performed major grove renovation.

Even if they haven't changed their operations, those growers will must continue to implement the applicable BMPs on the checklist. They also must follow the guidelines application to their operation contained in "Nutrition of Florida Citrus Trees, Second Edition, UF-IFAS Publication CL253 (January 2008).

But growers enrolled in the Ridge Nitrate BMP program are required to re-enroll in the new manual within two years of manual adoption or by Jan. 8, 2015.

Because the new citrus BMPs are more detailed than the former Ridge BMP, growers should contact the FDACS to schedule an appointment so a representative can come out and help them identify the appropriate practices for their operation.

Contact David "Bo" Griffin or Susie Bishop, both at (863) 402-7020.

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