This category covers establishments primarily engaged in the production of fruits and nuts, not elsewhere classified. This classification also includes establishments deriving 50 percent or more of their total value of sales of agricultural products from fruits and tree nuts (Industry Group 017) but less than 50 percent from products of any single industry.
Fruit and Tree Nut Combination Farming
Other Noncitrus Fruit Farming
This relatively small American industry produces fruits that are normally grown in more tropical regions of the hemisphere. Avocado orchards, banana farms, coconut groves, coffee farms, date and fig orchards, kiwi fruit farms, olive groves, and pineapple and plantain farms are members of this category. Avocado, olive, and date production comprise the bulk of crops in this category. With increasing domestic and international demand, tree nut crops as a whole grew an average of 9 percent annually from 2001 to 2005. The value of the all fruit and tree nut crops in 2004 was $14.9 billion, the highest on record and 12 percent above 2003. The tree nuts crop portion was valued at $3.5 billion.
Most producers of tree nuts crops are small commercial enterprises situated in warmer climates, in such states as Hawaii, California, and Florida. The number of farms engaged in producing fruits and tree nuts in this industry has been in steady decline since the 1980s. As of 2004 the two top companies were Dole Food Co. of Westlake Village, California, a privately owned company with more than $4.3 billion in revenue, and Chiquita Brands International, of Cincinnati, Ohio, which emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2002 to post sales of roughly $1.4 billion.
Looking at the individual components of this industry classification is necessary due to great fluctuations in various crop yields from year to year. The apparent lack of any one statistical pattern over a span of a decade may be due to the fragile nature of such perishables as avocados and olives. These smaller, exotic crops are extremely dependent on favorable weather conditions for the success of the year's harvest. The import market also plays some role in the fluctuation within the industry.
World avocado production has risen steadily since the 1990s, and the United States is the third largest producer. Imports accounted for roughly 33 percent of U.S. avocado consumption in 2005, compared to 17...