Development reflects trend away from white Thompson Seedless Chilean producer/exporter Aconex is reporting successful results in the UK with a new dark red grape called Queen Rose. The Chilean deciduous industry is massive, yet this is one of the first examples of a locally bred fruit being grown on the outskirts of Santiago. Juan Pablo Munoz, sales manager, has already registered the late variety and says that ultimately the company will let other producers have rootstock. In the meantime, production will reach 100,000 cartons. Initial potential problems with immature fruit carrying a type of seed have been cured. It disappears as sugar levels rise. The development reflects the trend of the grape industry away from white Thompson Seedless into coloured berries which produce higher yields, store well and are less susceptible to sun damage. US varieties led by Red Globe, Crimson and Flame Seedless now equate to something in the region of 32 million cartons, a third more than Thompson. The grape industry has also benefited from a much improved export season now coming to a close. Last year was one of the worst on record in many growers' views. Multiples' interest has been maintained not just by good quality but also because of the earlier finish in South Africa. {{M/E FRESH PRODUCE }}