The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on December 1, 1997 · Page 53
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December 1, 1997

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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 53

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West Palm Beach, Florida
Issue Date:
Monday, December 1, 1997
Page:
Page 53
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Page 53 article text (OCR)

6 THE PALM BEACH POST DECEMBER 1 , 1997 AGRICULTURE Beagle Brigade gets new Orlando training headquarters he Beagle Brigade has a new barracks. T In a move to consoli policing the nation's airports, and 15 going through boot camp in Orlando, Heldt said. Beagles are chosen for the job because they are considered the "Eagle Scouts of dogs," according to a USDA fact sheet on the program. "Loyal, courageous, obedient, and patient, they travel well and are equally at home indoors and outdoors." The Beagle Brigade sniffs the baggage of international passengers as they proceed through Federal Inspection Service areas. When the dogs find something suspicious, they sit down to alert their partners. Officers then check the bags, confiscate any prohibited items and may issue fines of up to $250 to the offending travelers. Construction is under way on six new juice storage tanks that will increase the plants' capacity from 16 million to 22 million gallons. That project is expected to be completed by March 1998. SPEAKING OF ORANGE JUICE: National sales of the fruit drink set all-time records in October, according to the Florida Department of Citrus and Nielsen Marketing Research. Overall U.S. orange juice sales jumped 6.8 percent in October from the same period last year. The 64.1 million gallons are the highest volume of orange juice ever purchased in the U.S. during October. Michael Utley writes about agriculture and trade. Beagles with at least two years on the job have a success rate of better than 90 percent. So next time one sits by your feet at Miami International, you'll know you've been nabbed. SEEING GREEN IN ORANGES: Southern Gardens Citrus, a subsidiary of United States Sugar Corp., is planning to expand its fast-growing citrus processing plant in Clewiston. The company, South Florida's largest citrus grower and processor, intends to build two new orange juice extraction lines, bringing its total number of lines to five. When the new lines are in place, the plant will be able to process more than 25 million boxes of oranges per year. date its dog-training efforts, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has opened the new National Detector Dog Training Center in Orlando, where all of the beagles used to sniff out prohibited fruits, plants and meat are put through boot camp. The little brown-eyed hounds, affectionately known as the Beagle Brigade, are the nation's first line of defense against crop-destroying pests and diseases such as citrus canker and the Mediterranean fruit fly. The new Orlando center consolidates three regional training facilities, formerly in Miami, New York and San Francisco. Michael Utley After eight weeks of training, the dogs and their human partners are shipped off to 14 of the nation's busiest airports, including Miami, Orlando, Chicago, New York and Los Angeles. Brent Heldt, the USDA's chief dog trainer, said the Beagle Brigade may expand to Fort Lauderdale and Tampa. 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