Dundee Citrus Growers Association
By Allison Williams
Photos courtesy of Steven Callaham
Right here in Polk County sits the Dundee Citrus Growers Association. Steven Callaham, Executive Vice President and CEO has been apart of this organization for 20 years.
“Dundee Citrus Growers Association is a grower owned cooperative established in 1924 that handles the harvesting, packaging and marketing of its members’ agricultural products,” Callaham said. “The association handles Oranges, Grapefruit, Lemons, Tangerines, Peaches and Blueberries. Due to Citrus Greening Disease, Dundee has diversified and adapted new technologies.”
Callaham added, “We are a service oriented business serving the needs of our growers. We are the largest employer in Dundee and Lake Hamilton.”
Just in the last year 110 acres of “Citrus Under Protective Screen” or “CUPS” have been developed by Dundee Citrus Growers Association. In addition, currently in the works is “Phase 2” which comprises 113 acres of CUPS.
“This high tech and environmentally sustainable method of growing citrus excludes certain pests and diseases, requires less water and fertilizer to produce the highest quality fruit,” Callaham said.
A local Lake Wales resident, Callaham was exposed to the citrus industry growing up. In fact, anyone who has driven through Lake Wales can see an abundance of citrus throughout.
In Callaham’s teenage year, he worked at the University of Florida Citrus Research Center. This was the moment he realized he was passionate about pursuing both education and a future career in the citrus industry. Now 20 years later, he is thriving in the citrus industry.
For more information visit www.dun-d.com.
YouTube @ Dundee Citrus