90.7 WMFE and 89.5 WMFV are Central Florida's primary provider of NPR programming and Classical Music. Part of the community since 1965, providing quality national and local news and programming. We inspire and empower all Central Floridians to discover, grow and engage within and beyond their world.
Support for 90.7 WMFE is provided by

Proposed Antibiotic Use Against Citrus Greening Raising Health Concern

Greening is a disease that weakens citrus trees. The fruit becomes unusable. Photo by Amy Green / WMFE

Environmental groups are raising concern about a proposal to expand the use of antibiotics against a disease that has crippled Florida’s iconic citrus industry.

The fear is an increase in antibiotic-resistant diseases for humans.

The groups are asking the Environmental Protection Agency to deny the proposal to expand the use of the antibiotic streptomycin against citrus greening disease.

The Center for Biological Diversity delivered a petition with more than 45,000 signatures to the federal agency. Here is the organization’s Emily Knobbe.

“The more we keep doing this the more we end up with these antibiotic-resistant bacteria out in the environment that are way more dangerous than they used to be because they used to be treatable by our modern medicine, by our antibiotics.”

Florida’s citrus industry says monitoring ensures the antibiotic is used safely. The industry says production is down by two-thirds since the disease appeared 12 years ago.

“We’re in the fight of our lives against this disease,” says Andrew Meadows of Florida Citrus Mutual. “We’re an $8 billion industry, and we generate about 46,000 jobs, and so we’re very important to the state of Florida, and many of the rural communities in Florida in the interior rely on citrus.”


Get The 90.7 WMFE Newsletter

Your trusted news source for the latest Central Florida news, updates on special programs and more.

Stay tuned in to our local news coverage: Listen to 90.7 WMFE on your FM or HD radio, the WMFE mobile app or your smart speaker — say “Alexa, play NPR” and you’ll be connected.

WMFE Journalistic Ethics Code | Public Media Code of Integrity

Amy Green

About Amy Green

Reporter and Producer

Amy Green covers the environment and climate change at WMFE News. She is an award-winning journalist and author whose extensive reporting on the Everglades is featured in the book MOVING WATER, published by Johns Hopkins University Press, and podcast DRAINED, available wherever you get your podcasts. Amy’s ... Read Full Bio »