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Citrus greening fight focus of USDA chief visit

Posted at 5:42 PM, Feb 23, 2016

The United States Department of Agriculture's chief scientist from Washington D.C. paid a visit Tuesday to a research station in Polk County to check on the fight against citrus greening.

Researchers gave Dr. Catherine Woteki a firsthand look at the devastation citrus greening causes to the orange crop.

She toured the University of Florida's research station in Lake Alfred where scientists are trying several different approaches to fight the disease.

This year, the USDA dedicated more than $6 million in research money to the university solely to study citrus greening.

"It's important for me to see where we're putting our research dollars, meet with the scientists who are doing the research and bring back to Washington the insights they provide to me," Woteki said.

The USDA estimates citrus greening affects more than 75 percent of the orange crop.