Americans’ consumption of orange juice is plunging.
Sales of the breakfast staple are down 13% in the last four years, according to data from Nielsen.
Frozen orange juice has experienced the biggest drop in sales, falling 39% to $98 million since 2012.
Refrigerated orange juice sales fell 10% to $3.1 billion over the same time period.
Florida, which is the top producer of oranges used for juice in the US, is now on track for the smallest orange harvest in five decades, the Wall Street Journal reports.
On top of falling demand, orange producers have also been battling a bacterial disease that has been wiping out their groves.
As growers leave the business, orange processing plants have also been shutting down.
Florida once had more than four dozen processing plants, and now it has only seven, according to the Journal.
“You’re witnessing gut-wrenching decisions where multigenerational family citrus growers have reached a point where their risk tolerance isn’t there to continue,” Adam Putnam, commissioner of the Florida Agriculture Department and Consumer Services, told the Journal.
Orange juice sales are ironically declining at a time when Americans’ breakfast consumption is on the rise. Breakfast consumption is expected to grow faster than the US population over the next few years, and more and more Americans are choosing to eat breakfast away from home, according to NPD Group.
Thanks to the rise of the juicing trend, however, there’s now a wide array of juices and smoothies available that offer alternatives to orange juice.
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