Belgian growers who pack under the Flandria environmentally friendly label have included white asparagus in their export range this spring. They estimate around 60% will fit into this category. The crop is regarded as a niche product in the UK, as consumers prefer green varieties. However the VLAM marketing organisation is keen to expand salad sales in the UK this season. Targets are both the beef and vine tomato sector, which are being promoted under the new Green Arch brand which guarantees traceability. Belgian scientists have also developed an acoustic firmness sensor, a tiny hammer which tests the firmness of vegetables helping to assess storage potential. {{M/E FRESH PRODUCE }}