New Zealand kiwifruit growers have enjoyed one of their best seasons for several years according to Zespri chairman Douglas Voss. Sales have been projected to reach NZ$432m for the 63.6 million carton crop marketed globally. Zespri plans to increase its international role, by selling around a million trays of Italian fruit which is harvested outside its summer season, of which a proportion would be branded with its own name. It has also made progress with the development of Zespri Gold, a smoother sweeter variety which is being released to growers in California where some 350 hectares are under production. French and Italian producers are also showing interest. - New Zealand onion production may be growing an estimated 20% fewer onions this year, but hopes are high that the export season to the UK this summer will prove to be more profitable than 2001. Then heavy European crops depressed import prices, while the reverse is true for the coming year. {{M/E FRESH PRODUCE }}