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UF/IFAS Citrus Research and Education Center

UF/IFAS Citrus Research and Education Center

About CREC

Welcome to the Citrus Research & Education Center

UF IFAS CREC signFor the past 100 years, the University of Florida (UF) Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC) has been honored to assist the citrus industry in meeting its developmental needs through its Research, Extension, and Teaching programs. CREC is the oldest and largest off-campus experiment station in UF's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) and is unique among research centers in that it focuses entirely on one commodity, citrus.

CREC discovers and delivers innovative solutions that empower citrus and other agricultural interests to conduct responsible and profitable business. CREC fosters scientific excellence and efficient use of resources.

With 200+ employees, CREC is also home to the scientific research staff of the Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC). Facilities also include 600+ acres of groves, greenhouses, a fresh fruit packinghouse, a juice processing pilot plant and more than 40 laboratories.

In 1982, financial contributions from the citrus industry made possible the construction of Ben Hill Griffin, Jr. Citrus Hall, a conference facility that includes meeting rooms, a teaching laboratory, an electron microscopy facility and the largest citrus library in the world.

Online Tour and Photo Gallery

  • Education

    Education

    Welcome to the University of Florida's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Citrus Research and Education Center in Lake Alfred, Florida.   CREC is the world's largest Research, Teaching and Extension center devoted to citrus.   CREC scientists and engineers interact closely with the citrus industry to address pertinent issues in horticulture, pests and diseases, and postharvest and processing technology. 

    Over 250 people are employed at CREC.  Facilities include over 200 acres of groves, greenhouses, a citrus packinghouse, a citrus processing pilot plant and over 40 laboratories.   Ben Hill Griffin, Jr. Citrus Hall includes conference facilities, meeting rooms, a teaching laboratory, an electron microscopy facility and the largest citrus library in the world.  CREC is also home to the scientific research staff of the Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC).   

    Learn more about CREC's Research, Teaching and Extension programs through this online tour.  Thanks for visiting!

    University of Florida students at CREC can pursue M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Horticultural SciencesEntomology & NematologyPlant PathologySoil & Water ScienceAgricultural & Biological EngineeringFood Science & Human Nutrition, and Food and Resource Economics.

    Electron Microscope Training
    Electron Microscope Training

    Grosser Lab
    Grosser Lab

    Grosser Greenhouse Trials
    Grosser Greenhouse Trials

    Hands on Testing

    Hands on Testing

    Limited Onsite Dorms

    Limited Onsite Dorms

    Students Setting Up Spray Appl Test

    Students Setting Up Spray Appl Test

    UF courses and selected degree programs in Soil and Water Science (Environmental Science track), EntomologyPest Management and Agricultural Education are available through UF's College of Life and Agricultural Science distance educationCitrus-related courses are offered at CREC, and other courses are available through a videoconferencing network.  An on-campus student dormitory is available.

  • Educational Outreach

    Education Outreach

    Octocopter
    Octocopter

    Robotics Camp Visit Copter On Ground
    Robotics Camp Visit Copter On Ground

    Robotics Camp Visit
    Robotics Camp Visit

    CREC personnel devote time to students from area schools and organizations such as Future Farmers of America (FFA), 4-H and Ag in the Classroom. They also participate in activities such as science fairs, field trips, research projects and school visits.

  • Extension

    Extension

    Extension serves the public by providing information and conducting educational programs for citrus growers, processors, packers, related industry groups and homeowners. Short courses, workshops, meetings and other events are held yearly.

    Dr. Arnold Schumann Nurserymen Tour
    Dr. Arnold Schumann Nurserymen Tour

    Dr. Arnold Schumann Nurserymen Tour 2
    Dr. Arnold Schumann Nurserymen Tour 2

    Dr. Arnold Schumann Nurserymen Tour 3
    Dr. Arnold Schumann Nurserymen Tour 3

    Nurserymen Tour Group 2014
    Nurserymen Tour Group

    Meeting Room
    Meeting Room

    Jamie Burrow  Intl Nurserymen Tour 2014
    Jamie Burrow Intl Nurserymen Tour

    Tour Guests
    Tour Guests

    Tour Guests.Intl. Nurserymen 2014 3
    Tour Guests.Intl. Nurserymen

    m dewdney tour
    M Dewdney Tour

  • Ben Hill Griffin

    The Ben Hill Griffin, Jr. Citrus Hall at CREC, dedicated in 1982, includes meeting and conference rooms, a teaching laboratory, an electron microscopy facility and the largest citrus library in the world. The construction of this facility was made possible by financial contributions from the citrus industry. (Click Images to enlarge)

    BHG
    Ben Hill Griffin

    BHG Lobby
    Ben Hill Griffin Lobby

    EM-Lab Equipment
    EM Lab Equipment

    Library BHG
    Ben Hill Griffin Library

    BHG Library Entrance
    Ben Hill Griffin Library Entrance

    Teaching Lab
    Teaching Lab

    Seminars and events for the citrus industry and allied groups are held in the Ben Hill Griffin, Jr. Citrus Hall. View upcoming events and activities on the Latest News section.

    Meeting Room
    Meeting Room

    Meeting Room2
    Meeting Room 2

    Meeting Room3
    Meeting Room 3

  • Horticulture and Harvesting

    Horticulture and Harvesting

    Thirteen faculty scientists lead programs that focus on citrus production, horticulture, harvesting and related topics.  Some of the research areas include:

    • New scion and rootstock development
    • Soil, water and nutrition issues
    • Weed and pest management
    • Mechanical harvesting
    • Grove design and planting
    • Regulation of flowering and fruit development
    • Fruit quality and production
    • Economics
    • Freeze protection technology
    • Environmental stress physiology
    • Production management and precision agriculture
    • Agricultural engineering
    • Spray application technology

    Canopy Shaker Harvesting
    Canopy Shaker Harvesting

    Flourscope Image
    Flourscope Image

    Freeze Protection
    Freeze Protection

    GPS Mapping
    GPS Mapping

    Grove care
    Grove Care

    Growth Chamber
    Growth Chamber

    Greenhouse
    Greenhouse

    Mechanical harvesting
    Mechanical Harvesting

    Microsprinkler Tests
    Microsprinkler

  • Plant Pathology

    Plant Pathology

    At CREC, seven plant pathology faculty lead programs on diseases such as tristeza, citrus canker, postbloom fruit drop, greasy spot, citrus blight, citrus brown rot, foliar fungal diseases, citrus psorosis and many others, including exotic diseases. There is ongoing research on the biology and molecular genetics of disease-causing organisms, detection methods and management strategies. CREC plant pathologists are also working with plant breeders to develop disease-resistant varieties for Florida. (Click Images to enlarge)

    Transformation Lab 2
    Transformation Lab 2

    TransformationLab
    TransformationLab

    Yellow Vein Chlorosis
    Yellow Vein Chlorosis

    Related Links

  • Post Harvest Handling

    Post Harvest Handling

    The programs of four faculty focus on the preservation of fruit quality during harvest, packing, storage and transport. Some areas of study include:

    • Peel disorders, postharvest diseases and maintenance of fruit quality
    • Development of new citrus products
    • Automated handling and sorting of fruit
    • Sugar and acid metabolism in citrus fruit
    • Food safety
    • Abscission and mechanical harvesting

    Tour Packinghouse

    Enlarge Tour Packinghouse

    Oranges on Converbelt

    Enlarge Oranges on Conveyorbelt

    Extracted juice

    Enlarge Tour Packinghouse

    Related links

  • Processing

    Processing

    ProcessingTen scientists are involved in research on processed citrus juices and citrus products. Current projects include:

    • Processing technology for citrus juices and by-products
    • Juice flavor, color and nutrition
    • Pasteurization and evaporation technology
    • Development of new citrus products
    • Food safety and biosecurity

    Related links

  • Biotechnology

    Biotechnology

    The Plant Biotechnology working group enhances interaction between scientists in different disciplines who are working on long-term improvements for citrus production and processing using state of the art recombinant DNA and cell culture methods. CREC also has a Core Citrus Transformation Laboratory for citrus genetic research.

    Biotechnology lab

Contact CREC

Citrus Research & Education Center
700 Experiment Station Rd
Lake Alfred, FL 33850
Phone: 863.956.1151
E-mail: crec-web@ifas.ufl.edu