The nation's orange crop is down 18 percent from last month's forecast, mainly because of the hard freeze in California before Christmas, the Agriculture Department said Friday.

Officials said the Jan. 1 all-orange forecast of 25 million boxes for California was down 60 percent from the Dec. 1 estimate and 65 percent below last season's output.The Florida orange crop was put at 161 million boxes, down 2 percent from the December forecast but 46 percent more than the freeze-damaged harvest of last season. Arizona's crop, at 1.75 million boxes, would be up 11 percent from 1989-90.