Volumes to UK targeted to reach around 850,000 ctns Florida Pink grapefruit producers are confident they can rebuild their UK export volumes this season back to around 850,000 cartons by next May. The first fruit is due to arrive within a week. Last year packers shipped 20% less fruit to Europe for a variety of reasons. There were quality problems which produced lower packouts leading to higher growers' costs, although one salvation was the higher priced domestic juice market. Bruce McEvoy, chief executive of Seald-Sweet Growers, added that the export industry had to deal with a combination of high fobs and a strong dollar. There is also overcapacity at packhouse level, a legacy of the boom in total grapefruit production over the last decade which rose by nearly a thrid to 140,000 acres and then fell back by 20% because of lower prices. However, looking to the future, Robert Ballin, UK promotions manager for the state's Department of Citrus, is confident. "There is a good quality crop and we expect a full range of sizes to be available," he said. "Florida promotions will be aimed directly at the consumer and be based mainly on radio advertising linked with specific multiples. {{FRESH PRODUCE }}