People attending the Canadian Produce Marketing Association Annual Convention and Trade Show will be able to learn about TOMRA Sorting Solutions’ wide range of advanced sorting and processing systems.
Canada’s largest show for the fruit and vegetable industry, the association’s keystone event, takes place in the West Building at Vancouver Convention Centre from 2 to 4 April and TOMRA’s representatives can be found at booth 853.
Diarmuid Meagher, vice-president and sales manager, TOMRA Sorting Food, said: "We hope growers, packers and processors of fresh berries, potatoes, carrots, etc. will come to the CPMA, visit our booth and tell us about their needs. We will then be able to suggest customised solutions to address their specific circumstances, as our numerous machines are fully modular and permit a huge number of feature permutations."
Among the solutions TOMRA’s team will provide information on are the Halo, the latest advancement in sensor-based optical food sorting, its Primus Gemini optical sorter for fruit processors, and the Field Potato Sorter, the industry’s first successful high-throughput optical sorting solution for unwashed potatoes.
TOMRA says the Halo provides high-performance sorting and grading, based on factors such as: detailed size, geometry and shape; subtle blemishes, colors and defects; damage; and foreign material. Combining intelligence with advanced control, the reliable, compact machine offers high capacity, low maintenance, flexibility and increased profitability, via gentle handling. The Halo also guarantees long-life accuracy, providing quality control and feedback through an intuitive touch screen.
The company says the benefits of the machine for users include labour reductions of up to 80%, increases in throughput and yield as high as 25% and 4% respectively, a faster pack, low operational costs and improved product quality.
Halo applications for processors include skin or peeled potatoes, carrots, apricots and peaches, pear halves, tomatoes, green beans, citrus fruits – such as oranges and mandarins – as well as onions. Fresh and pack applications include: salad, small, large, russet, sweet and main crop potatoes; carrots and parsnips; pickles, cucumbers and gherkins; plus tomatoes.
Karel Strubbe, sales manager, the Americas and Oceania, TOMRA, said: "The Primus Gemini sorts multiple fruit applications with defects such as discolourations, shrivelling, softness, hail and insect damage, plus foreign material, delivering a high-quality end product, meeting modern consumer demands, and providing a very fast return on investment. Offering high capacity and low maintenance, the machine provides flexibility and gentle handling. Easy to use and equipped with an intuitive graphical user interface, it delivers optimal product scrutiny through its multiple inspection zones.
"Benefits of the Primus Gemini for customers include higher yield and throughput, reduced labour requirements, increased uniformity in colour and ripeness in packs, and the salvaging of traditionally uneconomic fruit.
"The versatile Primus Gemini works with a range of fruit, including blueberries, cherries, cranberries, olives, raspberries, red berries and strawberries."
TOMRA says the Field Potato Sorter (FPS) enables growers, processors and packer companies to lower labour and potato storage costs significantly, while raising product quality and yield.
Utilising unique, patent-pending biometric signature identification (BSI) technology, the FPS provides a multi-spectral representation of the visible and near infrared (NIR) spectral zones, which allows it to analyse and identify organic characteristics and compositions of all objects. It can therefore distinguish dirt clods, stones, foreign material and rotten potatoes, even those with substantial soil covering.
The machine can be used for different varieties and sizes of unwashed potato, while processors can use measurements the FPS makes and records, alongside predictive analysis, to optimise procedures within their operations.
Mr Meagher said: "The FPS is replacing hard-to-find manpower needed to clean the product stream going into and out of potato storage. The robust, waterproof and user-friendly machine is compact and available in various widths to fit all specific capacities up to 70,000 kilos an hour. The sorting machine is compatible with other potato grading equipment, but can also be used on its own to sort harvested potatoes, before or after storage."