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Compac unveils "leap forward" in cherry grading

Compac has announced the development of new technology to overcome the traditional issues associated with grading and sorting cherries.

End View is the new cherry grading technology that utilises learnings from Compac’s Spectrim platform to improve outcomes for cherry-specific produce lines.  End View will be available as a modular upgrade for existing customers, and as part of Compac’s cherry inspection solution InVision 7-View.

Due to their size and shape, cherries can be difficult to properly grade using existing cameras and technology. However, End View utilizes new cameras and software to detect and grade nose and stem defects such as rain cracks and mildew, while keeping current production speeds.

Embracing innovative technology has become more important for cherry growers as newly planted trees continue to come into production, pressuring existing plant capacities. With changing weather patterns growers are also trying to reduce the impact of unseasonal rain events, which are the main contributor to previously undetectable nose cracks.

Compac CEO Mike Riley said the importance of sorting cherries accurately is imperative in protecting batches from spoilage and providing high-quality exportable products for international consumers.

“One bad cherry can ruin a box. Our customers rely on our technology to maintain the quality of their product and protect their reputation and brand.

“We’re always striving to be on the cutting edge of grading and sorting technology development. As the fresh produce and agriculture sector continues to evolve, keeping up with demand and expectation will be key.”

The new End View solution also utilizes Compac’s latest artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning capabilities.  SmartMapTM and SmartSkinTM AI provides improved defect detection and categorization, and ease of use.

Recently, Compac partnered with Pure Pac in New Zealand’s South Island to outfit the operation with the most advanced, gentle and food safe best-of-breed sorting solution including the End View technology.  As the company plans to begin exporting its premium product internationally in 2017/2018, accurate sizing and grading, including detection of stem and nose defects were important parts of Compac’s proposal.

The End View prototype was tested in New Zealand, America and Canada.  Director of Panmure Orchards in New Zealand saw immediate benefits from the technology. “In terms of End Views which include improved optics and software, the machine can now see the whole fruit allowing additional classification of fruit surface which improves the quality of pack.  A secondary benefit is the increase in packhouse throughput on nose cracked batches whilst still maintaining the quality of the pack.”

Riley says Compac is dedicated to continual investment into cherries, directly improving performance and adding capabilities to advance yields and boost the quality of produce globally.

“We were receiving such strong global demand for a next generation cherry grading solution that we decided to accelerate our Inspection Systems roadmap to focus on this. We’re absolutely thrilled with the result and feedback from our development customers has been superb. We can’t wait to see this product in packhouses across the world.”

End View will officially be launched later this year at PMA Fresh Summit in New Orleans, with roll out to begin in 2018 across the globe.

For more information: www.compacsort.com

Publication date: 9/6/2017


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