Texas citrus is synonymous with red grapefruit, and with good reason since the quality and beauty of red grapefruit grown in the Rio Grande Valley is unrivaled. During this presentation, Dr. David Laughlin at the Texas A&M University Kingsville Citrus Center will talk about the origins of grapefruit and how it came to be established as the flagship of citrus in Texas. How and where grapefruit is grown and harvested will be presented. We will also talk about some of challenges faced by grapefruit farmers in Texas and some of the aspects of the Rio Grande Valley that make it a special place to grow citrus. The presentation will finish up by providing an outlook on the citrus industry in Texas followed by Q&A.
Dr. David Laughlin is an Assistant Professor at the Texas A&M University Kingsville Citrus Center located in Weslaco, Texas in the Rio Grande Valley, the heart of Texas citrus. At the Citrus Center, Dr. Laughlin works in numerous roles, including research on citrus disease management and horticulture, grower outreach, and teaching a citrus and subtropical fruit crop production class. Dr. Laughlin is a plant pathologist by training although he is involved in many aspects of citrus production. Dr. Laughlin is a native of the Rio Grande Valley and received his education at UT Brownsville and Texas A&M University. He has worked at the Citrus Center for five years, following work done on coffee research in Guatemala.