All processed Florida citrus fruit are subjected to an independent, State of Florida inspection system for determining minimum acceptable maturity, quality and yield parameters before that fruit may be utilized in juice processing. The ˜State Test House’, which includes a ˜random’ fruit sampler system and an automated ˜Brix-acid unit’ (BAU), has become the economic cornerstone of the Florida citrus industry, and state inspections are required in all processing plants. Each load is appropriately sampled and determinations of juice content, acid and total solids are made. Results are provided to both grower and processor.
In 2007, The State Test House ‘upgrade committee’ was established with members chosen to represent growers, processors, and regulators. The FDOC Scientific Research Department (FDOC/SRD) was chosen to conduct a study to evaluate the performance of two types of equipment representing different technologies available to measure soluble solids (Brix). The FDOC’s study compared Brix determinations and related variances with gravimetric and refractometric technologies.