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Spain: Kiwi Atlántico to measure ripeness and hardness with optical system

Given its firm commitment to innovation, Kiwi Atlántico, a company associated to AINIA, is planning a 1,000 square metre expansion of its facilities. One of the key elements of the new plant will be a system to select the fruit without damaging it, which has been developed with the collaboration of AINIA Technological Centre and Maxfrut.

The system makes use of optical techniques to measure the degree of ripeness and hardness of the fruit and thus determine which pieces should remain in the chambers and which are ready to go on the market.

In this way, it is possible to sort the kiwis based on their sugar level, firmness and dry matter, and adapt the supply to each type of market (there are geographical areas which prefer to eat ripe kiwis and others that prefer them greener).

Moreover, this makes it possible for the fruit to reach the consumer in the best possible conditions and in uniform packs, so that when taken home, consumers can eat it without having to check which pieces are riper.

The system also reduces product losses, because it does not resort to invasive techniques to determine the fruit's degree of ripeness.

In addition to the 1,000 metres of work area, Kiwi Atlántico is also expanding its refrigeration capacity by 2,000 tonnes and has acquired more handling and packaging machinery. The expansion works undertaken by Kiwi Atlántico will cost a little over 3,100,000 Euro and are expected to be completed within two years. The project, which has the financial support of the Department of Rural Affairs of the Government of Galicia, strengthens Kiwi Atlántico's position as the largest kiwi marketer in Spain and one of the most important in Europe.

Kiwi Atlántico, has more than 70 partners and works with 20 associated producers.

The company is part of the club of innovators promoted by AINIA who are committed to innovation, food safety and quality.


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