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Costs of picking and hauling Florida citrus fruits
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 Material Information
Title: Costs of picking and hauling Florida citrus fruits
Series Title: <1971-72-> Economics report
Portion of title: Cost of picking and hauling Florida citrus fruits
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: University of Florida -- Agricultural Experiment Station. -- Dept. of Agricultural Economics
University of Florida -- Food and Resource Economics Dept
Publisher: Dept. of Agricultural Economics, Florida Agricultural Experiment Stations, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences
Place of Publication: Gainesville Fla
Creation Date: 1961
Publication Date: -1974
Frequency: annual
regular
 Subjects
Subjects / Keywords: Citrus fruits -- Harvesting -- Costs -- Periodicals   ( lcsh )
Citrus fruits -- Transportation -- Costs -- Periodicals   ( lcsh )
Citrus fruit industry -- Costs -- Periodicals -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
serial   ( sobekcm )
 Notes
Dates or Sequential Designation: -1972-73.
Issuing Body: Vols. for <1967-68-> issued by the Department of Agricultural Economics, Florida Agricultural Experiment Stations, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences; <1971-72-> by the Food and Resource Economics Department, Aggricultural Experiment Stations, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida.
General Note: Some issues have title: Cost of picking and hauling Florida citrus fruits.
General Note: Description based on: 1967-68 season.
Funding: Agricultural economics mimeo report.
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 03583885
lccn - 74641566
issn - 0093-6553
System ID: UF00027604:00016
 Related Items
Succeeded by: Estimated costs of picking and hauling Florida citrus fruits

Table of Contents
    Title Page
        Title page
    Main
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
Full Text

Agricultural Economics
Mimeo Report No. 63-7


March 1963

6036


COSTS OF PICKING AND HAULING


FLORIDA CITRUS FRUITS

1961-62 SEASON


By

A. H. Spurlock
Agricultural Economist


Cost Per Box
(cents)


1951 1952 1953 1954 1955 1956 1957 1958 1959 1960 1961 1962
Trend in the Cost of Picking Oranges, 1950-51 to 1961-62


A Study Conducted with Funds Provided by the
Research and Marketing Act



Department of Agricultural Economics
Florida Agricultural Experiment Stations
Gainesville, Florida








COSTS OF PICKING AND HAILING FLORIDA
CITRUS FRUITS, 1961-62 Season


CONTENTS

Page

Introduction . .. . . . 1

Costs of Picking and Hauling, 1961-62 . . . 2

Variation in Cost Among Firms . . . . 6

Comparison of 1961-62 Costs with Previous Seasons . .. 10





Introduction

This is the 12th annual summary of costs of picking and hauling

citrus fruits, prepared from a sample of citrus dealers, packinghouses,

and processors. Other handling and marketing costs in the citrus industry

are released in separate publications as indicated inside the back cover.

Costs of handling citrus fruits from the tree to the packinghouse

or processing plant for the 1961-62 season were summarized by type of

fruit for 33 firms. However, several firms did not haul fruit and

several others did not pick all the fruit hauled by their trucks. Six

of the firms furnishing data were citrus dealers specializing in the

procurement, sale, and delivery of fruit to the processing plant, 24

were principally packers of fresh fruit and 3 were processors. Most of

the dealers also contracted with other operators to pick and haul some

of their volume. Contracting with other operators to pick and haul part

or all of their volume also was common among the fresh packers and

processors.







The number of firms included by location was Polk County, 12;

Orange County, 7; Lake County, 4; Pinellas County, 3; Indian River County,

2; and one each in Hillsborough, Pasco, Seminole, Hernando, and Highlands

counties.

Total volume of fruit handled varied widely among firms. Only

one firm had less than 200,000 boxes, 11 firms picked more than 1,000,000

boxes and 16 firms hauled more than 1,000,000 boxes each. The average

volume for the 31 firms picking was 1,091,000 boxes, and for 32 firms

hauling fruit 1,389,958 boxes.


Costs of Picking and Hauling, 1961-62

The average costs per box for picking and hauling citrus fruit

for the 1961-62 season from the grove to the processor or packinghouse are

shown in Table 1. These costs are weighted averages; that is, the total

money costs of all firms were divided by the total number of boxes handled.

In prior years the costs for citrus dealers were shown separately to

reflect somewhat different methods of operation. The distinction between

citrus dealers and packers and processors in methods of picking and hauling

is perhaps not as clear as it once was. Packinghouses often pick and handle

some fruit destined for canneries by the bulk methods used by citrus dealers

and processors. A few packers also use bulk handling methods for the fruit

which is packed fresh.

In some prior years a cost was estimated for the procurement and

sale of fruit by dealers. Because of the difficulty of arriving at a

suitable proration basis this has not been attempted in Table 1. Direct or

identifiable procurement costs such as buyers' salaries or commissions

have been omitted. Certain other buying and selling costs as auto expense

and telephone have been distributed to picking and hauling expense.







TABLE l.--Average Costs Per Box of Picking and Hauling Citrus Fruits, 1961-62 Season.
Fresh Fruit Packinghouses, Processors and Citrus Dealers.


Total Picking & Hauling


Tange-
rines
6 K


Oranges


Grape- Tange-
fruit rines


Number of operators

Average volume
(boxes)



Labor:
Field foremen
Pickers
Loaders
Grove drivers
Highway drivers
Other labor
Total
Payroll taxes,
insurance
Total labor

Other Costs:
Gasoline, oil
Repairs
Licenses, taxes
Depreciation
Insurance
Supplies & shop
Equipment rental
Foreign labor
Miscellaneous
Administrative.
Total other costs

Total costs


SJ.U U ..


1,389,958 795,283 265,903 45,455 .. .. .

Cost Per Box (cents)

0.07 3.05 1.99 4.77 3.12 2.06 4.84
19.64 14.31 59.79 19.64 14.31 59.79
2.33 2.64 3.29 2.33 2.64 3.29
1.18 1.03 2.35 1.18 1.03 2.35
2.86 .... .. 2.86 2.86 2.86
.52 .68 .57 .66 1.20 1.09 1.18
3.45 26.88 20.54 70:86 30.33 23.99 74.31

.23 1.25 1.02 3.03 1.48 1.25 3.26
3.68 28.13 21.56 73.89 31.81 25.24 77.57


1.79
1.77
.44
1.09
.25
.07
.30

.10
.92
6.73
10.41


.59
1.73
.11
.59
.09
.19
.19
.55
.10
1.52
5.66
33.79


.51
1.60
.07
.33
.05
.15
.09
.36
.09
.94
4.19


.53
1.68
.19
1.03
.16
.31
.57
1.10
.12
2.08
7.77


25.75 81.66


2.38
3.50
.55
1.68
.34
.26
.49
.55
.20
2.44
12.39

44.20


2.30 2.32
3.37 3.45
.51 .63
1.42 2.12
.30 .41
.22 .38
.39 .87
.36 1.10
.19 .22
1.86 3.00
10.92 14,50

36.16 92.07


aIncludes management and office salaries, office supplies, auto, travel and
entertainment, interest expense, lights and water, legal and audit, advertising, dues
and subscriptions, donations, and telephone and telegraph.


Picking.--This is the operation of getting the fruit off the tree and into

the highway truck, commonly termed "picking and loading" or'roadsiding". The

principal costs of performing this service are labor, fuel, repairs, licenses,


Item


Hauling
Roadside
to
Plant
30)


25.75 01.66








insurance and depreciation for the grove trucks, crew trucks, tractors

loading machines and other picking equipment, and management and office

salaries.

Picking costs, as shown in Table 1, include all amounts paid for

direct labor for picking and delivery to the roadside, grove truck expense,

and a portion of overhead and management expenses. Picking labor was

allocated to the various types of fruit from payroll analyses and piece rates

insofar as possible. Fuel and repairs were prorated on a box basis equally to

all kinds of fruit. Certain overhead expenses, which tend to be fixed, were

distributed between the several types of fruit in the ratio of 1.00 to grape-

fruit, 1.50 to oranges and 3.00 to tangerines.

The methods of picking and handling fruit (trees to roadside operation)

such as picking in boxes, tractor baskets, grove trailers, and pallet boxes are

mixed among the various operators. A single operator may use two or more

methods. The method used affects the cost of labor as shown in Table 1 as well

as the distribution among classes of labor. For example picking in boxes

required loading and driving labor for the grove truck, whereas some other

method would eliminate loading and sometimes driving labor also. Thus an

operator using some crews with the box method and some by other picking methods

would have in the aggregate a labor distribution which would not represent

either single method exactly.

Labor costs for handling citrus in boxes are higher than for the other

methods, especially if the fruit is destined for a packinghouse. From a

limited amount of data, costs per box for packinghouse fruit were about l1 cents

higher for orange pickers and 2 cents higher for grapefruit pickers. Loaders

averaged almost 2 cents more for box fruit for packinghouses, grove drivers 0.8

cent more and foremen cent more. Thus labor costs for picking oranges were








about 4.6 cents, and grapefruit 5 cents per box higher for packinghouse

fruit picked in boxes than for cannery fruit.

Total picking costs for 31 firms picking oranges averaged 33.79

cents per box; and for grapefruit, for 30 firms 25.75 cents (Table 1).

Total picking costs for tangerines averaged 81.66 cents per box for 26

firms. Labor, including workmen's compensation insurance and payroll

taxes, was the largest item of cost in picking fruit, being approximately

84 percent of the -total for oranges and grapefruit, and 90 percent

for tangerines.

Hauling.--This operation refers to the transportation of fruit

from the roadside to the processing plant or fresh fruit packinghouse.

It includes also the hauling of packinghouse eliminations to the cannery,

this being counted as a separate haul. This is usually a somewhat less

expensive haul than from grove to plant, according to operators. One

of the reasons for this is heavier loading of trucks and the use of bulk

handling methods. Hauling does not include the use of trucks in the grove,

this being considered a part of the picking and loading operation.

Citrus hauling costs for 32 firms with an average volume of 1,389,958

boxes were 10.41 cents per box for 1961-62 (Table 1). This is a composite

cost for all kinds of fruit hauled, and all types of operators. Labor c9sts

including payroll taxes and workmen's compensation insurance were 35

percent of the total, and other operating costs (fuel, repairs, licenses,

depreciation, insurance, rent) 56 percent. Administrative costs were about

9 percent of the total.

The distances over which the fruit was hauled are unknown, but

citrus dealers and processors are believed to have had longer hauls than

packinghouses hauling box-frit. While costs do not vary directly with distance







hauled, they do increase with longer hauls. On the other hand, hauling

box fruit is higher than bulk hauling.

Hauling costs per box do not appear to be related to total volume

hauled. Hauling costs perhaps are affected more by the volume per truck owned,

and by average distance of haul as well as by the proportion of box fruit and

tangerines hauled.

Most operators have stated that hauling costs are about equal for

oranges and grapefruit, but higher for tangerines because of the lighter

loading required.

Picking and Hauling Costs Combined.--The last three columns in

Table 1 show the average costs for the complete operation of moving of

fruit from the tree to the plant which included picking and hauling combined.

This is obtained by adding together the costs allocated to the separate

services. Oranges cost 44.20 cents per box, grapefruit 36.16 cents, and

tangerines 92.07 cents for picking and hauling to the plant.

Many citrus firms, both dealers and packers, contract with other

operators to pick or haul, or both. Contract picking and hauling was

separated from the expense of the firm's own crews. Rates or amounts paid

contractors are not shown in Table 1 because of the difficulty of determining

the exact service performed and the kind of fruit.


Variation in Cost Among Firms

Total cost varied rather widely among firms for providing the same

service. These variations in total costs for picking and hauling in 1961-62

are shown in Tables 2, 3, and 4. Not enough is known about the individual

firms' operations to provide much information about reasons for costs' being

high or low. The data dp not show any consistent relationship between volume

of fruit handled and level of costs. In each volume group there is a wide







range of costs for both picking and hauling, indicating the influence

of factors other than volume. For hauling, the average distance hauled

the idle capacity of the equipment owned and the type of fruit hauled

doubtless affected the over-all season hauling cost per box. For picking,

costs cannot decrease beyond a certain point because of the large

proportion of labor costs, some of which are piece rates and do not

fluctuate with volume picked. The proportion of different kinds and

varieties of fruit affect picking cost differences among firms. Seedlings

are much more expensive to pick than budded oranges. Temples and tange-

rines have been included in oranges. Some murcotts have been indluded in

tangerines which are more expensive to pick.

Management decisions probably affect citrus picking and hauling

costs to a considerable extent, The operation of picking and hauling

fruit is only one segment of the total business operation, whether the

firm be a citrus dealer packinghouse, or processor. Obtaining a large

and continuous volume of fruit may have advantages to the firm that out

weigh the advantage of merely achieving low cost in the picking and

hauling operation.

Total picking costs for 31 firms varied from 25.8 cents to 45.6

cents per box for oranges, and for 30 firms from 19.0 cents to 35.4 cents

per box for grapefruit, The range in cost for picking tangerines was from

60.7 cents to $1.25 per box for 26 firms (Table 2).

Hauling costs for 32 firms varied from 5.9 cents to 23.0 cents

per box (Table 3).

For picking and hauling combined, total costs for 30 firms ranged

from 33.7 cents to 66.5 cents per box for oranges. The modal group of

16 firms had costs between 39.2 cents and 48.6 cents. picking and hauling





8


costs for grapefruit for 29 firms varied from 27.0 cents to 57.3 cents per

box. The modal group of 15 firms had costs between 32.4 cents and 40.3 cents

per box. Picking and hauling tangerines varied from 68.7 cents to $1.33 per

box for 25 firms with costs for 13 firms in the modal group between 85.8 cents

and $1.10 per box (Table 4).


TABLE 2.--Variation in Total Cost per box for Picking Oranges, Grapefruit,
and Tangerines, 1961-62 Season. Citrus Dealers, Packers and processors.


Cost Per Box Oranges Grapefruit Tangerines
----- ..1 i ii 11 i.111 n n i i i ] i *i ---


(cents)

Under 21
21 23.9
24 26.9
27 29.9
30 32.9
33 35.9
36 38.9
39 41.9
42 and over
Under 65
65 69.9
70 74.9
75 79.9
80 84.9
85 89.9
90 94.9
95 99.9
100 and over
Total


Average cost per box
-cents)


Number of Firms

2
7
2 10
3 6 .
10 3 .
8 2
4
2
2 .
S. 1
S. .. 3
3


4

S. 5
3
31 30 26



33.8 25.8 81.7


25.8-45.6 19.0-35.4


Range in costs
(cents)


60.7-124.7








TABLE 3.--Variation in Total Cost per box for Hauling Citrus Fruit from
Grove to Plant, 1961-62 Season. Citrus Dealers, Packers, and Processors.


Cost Per Box
(cents)
5 6.9 . . .
7 8.9 . . .
9 10.9 . .
11 12.9 . .
13 14.9 . . .
15 16.9 . . .
17 and over . .
Total number of firms
Average cost per box (cents)
Range in costs (cents)


Number of Firms


. 3
. 10
. 7
. 5
. 3
. 2
. 2
32
10.4
5.9 23.0


TABLE 4.--Variation in Total Cost per box for Picking and Hauling Citrus,
1961-62 Season, Citrus Dealers, Packers, and Processors.


Cost Per Box Oranges Grapefruit Tangerines

(cents) Number of Firms
25 29.9 .. 4
30 34.9 1 9
35 39.9 8 8
40 44.9 9 6
45 49.9 7 1..
50 54.9 2
55 59.9 2 1
60 64.9
65 69.9 1 1
70 74.9 .
75 79.9 .. .. 2
80 84.9 .. ., 2
85 89,9 .. .. 7
90 94.9 .. .. 2
95 99.9 .. .. 2
100 109.9 .. .. 2
110 over .. 7
Total 30 29 25

Range in costs
(cents) 33.7 66.5 27.0 57.3 68.7 132.5

Average cost per box
(cents) 44.2 36.2 92.1








Comparison of 1961-62 Costs with Previous Seasons

Total picking costs for 1961-62 averaged slightly below those

for the preceding season for all classes of fruit (Table 5). Hauling

costs also showed a decrease from the average of the preceding season.

Total picking and hauling costs, tree to plant, thus were lower than

for several seasons. Labor costs per box declined slightly for hauling,

but were slightly higher for picking all fruit. Reductions .of cost there-

fore were principally in the operating costs other than labor. Most of

the firms had a larger volume of fruit handled in 1961-62 and operated

over a somewhat Yonger period.

Some of the season-to-season variation:in cost for each service

is due to the firms included. These have not remained identical each year,

and as previously pointed out, costs vary widely among firms.


TABLE 5.--Average Cost per box for Picking and Hauling Citrus Fruits, 12 Seasons.

No. Picking Total Picking & Haulinga
Season of Hauling Grape- Tange- Grape- Tange-
Firms Oranges fruit rines Oranges fruit rines
Cents Per Box
1950-51 9 10.31 28.36 18.62 56.93 38.67 28.93 67.24
1951-52 26 9.81 28.42 19.51 61.93 38.23 29.32 71.74
1952-53 29 9.71 29.12 21.98 59.62 38.83 31.69 69.33
1953-54 37 9.61 28.87 20.58 60.86 38.48 30.19 70.47
1954-55 36 9.38 28.93 20.91 64.72 38.31 30.29 74.10
1955-56 36 9.47 30.52 21.73 66.39 39.99 31.20 75.86
1956-57 34 9.27 31.36 23.46 73.96 40.63 32.73 83.23
1957-58 34 11.31 33.20 24.09 75.53 44.61 35.40 86.84
1958-59 32 11.46 33.30 24.16 74.90 44.76 35.62 86.36
1959-60 33 11.23 34.17 25.16 83.68 45.40 36.39 94.91
1960-61 37 11.17 34.96 26.69 83.53 46.13 37.86 94.70
1961-62 33 10.41 33.79 25.75 81.66 44.20 36.16 92.07
citrus dealers usually have an additional cost for buying and selling
fruit which has varied from 2k to 4 cents per box.