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Leadership and rivalry, 1911


Chase, Joshua C. "Minutes of Convention of Citrus Fruit Growers of Florida, Called to meet in Orlando, Florida, Saturday, November 4, 1911." Unpublished manuscript, last modified November 4, 1911.

Read more: Citrus Fruit Growers of Florida

In the early years of commercial citrus growing, leadership and cooperation amongst growers remained elusive. With different growing regions, banking interests, railroad firms, and land investors competing for power in the state, citrus organizations provided an avenue in which growers could overcome common obstacles. In an industry that can be paralyzed by high shipping costs, citrus organizations used their combined power to pressure railroads and shipping companies to provide expedient service at fair prices. Competition from California citrus was also fierce and among other factors, led to a split in the ranks of the powerful Citrus Exchange Commission based out of Tampa. A variety of regional and special interest citrus organizations, such as The Florida Citrus Exchange, which is known today as Seald-Sweet; The Indian River Fruit Company; and The Florida Natural Growers, created in the early 1900s, continue to this day.