- Domingo 23 de janeiro de 2022
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Orange Juice Futures Rise on Cold Scare

Prices of frozen concentrated orange juice rose as traders positioned themselves in the event that an arctic air mass set to plunge into Florida's citrus belt will produce crop damage. The price of the March FCOJ on ICE Futures U.S. rose 1.2 cents, or 1.7%, to 72.55 cents a pound, the strongest price settlement in a week.

"Freeze premium is all this is, along with a little profit-taking," said Jimmy Tintle, a TransWorld Futures analyst in Tampa, Fla.

Traders bought the futures after viewing forecasts calling for temperatures into the mid-20s and 30s Fahrenheit for parts of the Florida citrus belt, thus creating a small price premium in the market. Prices came off the strongest levels of the day when other traders pocketed the gains, Mr. Tintle said.

Selling also occurred on bets that this week's cold snap wouldn't produce widespread crop damage, a broker said. A cold air mass nearly two weeks ago sent temperatures into the 20s, but apparently no widespread crop damage occurred, thanks in large part to producers irrigating their groves and artificially raising the coldest temperatures above the critical point. Temperatures must fall below 28 degrees for four or more hours to damage citrus crops.

Meteorologists expect temperatures on Wednesday night and Thursday morning to fall to the mid-20s in Polk and Hillsborough counties on the northern edge of the citrus belt, while 20-degree readings will spread as far south as Hendry and Glades counties in the southern belt. If the forecasts for cold weather hold, March FCOJ futures may add another one to two cents of weather premium, and could climb to near 80 cents a pound if the cold produces significant fruit damage, Mr. Tintle said.

By: Stephen Laughlin



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