The Orange Juice King

The Orange Juice King

by Robert Allen Morris


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In a north Florida turpentine camp in 1915, the birth of Jack Thomas, an illegitimate child, to a 15-year old single girl was nothing extraordinary. Neither was Jack's kidnapping and enslavement in an illegal child labor camp. But his leading federal authorities to arrest the operators and close those labor camps at the age of 15 made the national news. So did his leadership and bravery in World War II that led to his winning the Congressional Medal of Honor.

Jack's search for a healthy beverage for the public leads to the discovery of how to make orange juice that tastes nearly as good as fresh-squeezed but is more convenient and available year around. He subsequently builds a juice manufacturing and marketing empire. This is a historical novel comprised of both fiction and non-fiction. The fictional part tells an incredible story about one man's determination to succeed against overwhelming odds. The non-fiction part is a factual description of the birth, growth and challenges of a unique industry in its endeavor to satisfy the consumer's search for product superiority, fresh-squeezed taste and convenience. It also enables readers to experience the old Florida, the way it was before all the theme parks and condos.

"I enjoyed reading this story of a Florida family and their many experiences and efforts to establish their dreams in the difficult environment of their day. Their success story is one of great effort and bravery, overcoming the many problems and pitfalls of their time. It is a true American story, recalling the hardships, family, economical, cultural and other challenges of that era. I look forward to reading more of this author's recollections of the development of one of our most dramatic cultures in a land so environmentally challenging." - Mary Kate Buckley, Library of Congress, retired

""The Orange Juice King" is a historical novel that is very well written and captures the flavor to several industries that were central to the economic development of Florida in the early to mid-1990s. The characters are composites of people who were pioneers in the sense that they were the innovators and risk takers who were providing Florida with an economic base that exists today. Woven into the stories of the character's lives is a sense of what it felt like to be poor and beaten down in early Florida and what it felt like to be wealthy and very successful.

The author, Allen Morris, grew up in a family that was similar to some of the characters in this novel and during his career he has met and known most of the leaders of the orange juice industry. He has carefully woven his understanding of the characters of the industry into a very entertaining book and does a very good job of giving the reader the historical flavor of how orange juice became a large industry in the Americas. This history is still evolving as is the history of Florida.

The book is easy to read and very interesting. It may well be adaptable to a short TV series about the history of modern Florida and the impact of the orange juice industry.

Having been a part of the citrus industry for many years, I understand and appreciate the depth of knowledge about the subject that Allen Morris shows in this story. He is to be congratulated on researching and writing "The Orange Juice King"." - M. Brent Gabler, Former Vice-President of Manufacturing and Engineering, Tropicana Products, Inc.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780615488745
Publisher: Orchid Springs Publishing, LLC
Publication date: 07/28/2011
Pages: 302
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.63(d)

About the Author

Robert Allen Morris, a Florida native, is an agricultural economist with over 30 years' experience in the citrus industry. Since 2007, he has been on the faculty of the University of Florida, stationed at the Citrus Research and Education Center in Lake Alfred, FL. Prior to that, he held managerial positions with a number of juice and beverage companies, including Tropicana and the Coca-Cola Company. He has also done consulting for many citrus growers and processors. Allen has published over 40 articles on citrus in trade and professional journals and has given numerous presentations about citrus world-wide. He wrote this novel because he wants to explain the intricacies of the birth and growth of the orange juice industry to the public, while making it an interesting story. And, he wants to give readers an opportunity to experience the old Florida, the way it was before all the theme parks and condos. Allen can be contacted at Visit for more literary works by this author.

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Orange Juice King 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
More swine talk for thou. Ogtay otay "isperway" irsfay esultray
Anonymous More than 1 year ago