South African easy peeler volumes are expected to be 10-20% higher than last season's according to Capespan, which will market 25% of the fruit shipped to the UK.
The first volumes of 2006 Outspan satsumas have left the Port of Durban and are due to arrive in the UK on March 27.
Rozanne Davis, citrus procurement manager, said: "Due to the temperatures, the fruit has excellent colour. The quality and taste are excellent, with good shelf life. The next region to start picking will be the Eastern Cape with arrivals early next month."
Capespan UK trading director Martin Dunnett added: "We anticipate 100,000 cartons of satsumas. They will be followed by clementines in the last week of April"
The first Navel oranges should be in the UK by the end of May. Valencias will be shipped from August until early winter.
The grapefruit crop is expected to be similar to last year's at 11 million cartons, of which the UK traditionally absorbs some 700,000 cartons.
About 60% of demand is now for red-fleshed varieties, with 35% of volumes accounted for by white Marsh Seedless.Interest in paler Rose varieties is falling.