Workers picking apples in Capespan orchard at Applethwaite Farm, Grabouw.
The workers were very keen to have their photo taken.
Dirk Meyer Operations manager at Applethwaith Farm and Johan De Klerk COO Capespan.
The workers are paid per basket of apples they use a tag to record each basket.
The apples this year have great colour. Applethwaith Farm is in the process of renewing the orchards the aim is to plant 100 ha up to 2019.
The apples are sorted in the field, before being taken the CA store.
There are 30 ha of older trees, but as long as they cover the growing and harvesting costs they stay in production.
The climate in Grabouw is one of the top three for growing apples in South Africa. After the 2nd world war it was almost entirely an apple growing region but these days there are also a lot grapes grown here.
A delivery of apples arriving at the Novo packhouse in Paarl.
Capespan bought this packhouse in Paarl from Colors. The packhouse burnt down in 2009 during harvest time. Before the fire it packed a variety of fruit but now specialises in apples, it also packs some pears.
After fire the packhouse was rebuilt for apples with best the technology from Grefa. One of the main advantages of this technology is that it can scan for bruising, important which is important because in South Africa lot of transport done by truck. we can guarantee consistency in speed and quality small lines one count one quality
Apples are packed here for around 10 months per year. The packhouse also packs for other companies. Maxumum capacity is 150,000 bins of 375-400 kg.
The packhouse achieves 95% accuracy giving consistent quality.
The apples stay in the water the throughout the process, there are 41 lanes, 4 fillers with 10 lanes each.
Workers take samples.
The water is used for 8 weeks and is constantly sterilised, this all done remotely.
There are two lane which are used for emergency orders.
The packing process in very labour intensive and mostly done by hand.
As we mentioned the packhouse also packs for other companies, Capespan decided to keep the original name Novo to assert the independent nature of the packhouse.
With all these packing materials in the building, 2.5 million Rand was invested in fire-fighting equipment to ensure that that there is repetition of the fire back in 2009.
There is also a hybrid line which can also pack pears.