Friday, 08 December 2023 09:25

Robo packer hits a billion

Written by  Leo Argent
Alexandre Prot of Vergers de Sennevieres. SUPPLIED Alexandre Prot of Vergers de Sennevieres. SUPPLIED

New Zealand inventor and manufacturer Robotics Plus Limited’s fruit packing robot has hit a major milestone of one billion pieces of fruit packed.

The billionth piece of fruit packed – an apple – was in France at Vergers de Sennevieres. The robots were sold, installed, and supported by industrial equipment supplier Sormaf in 2022. The machines have allowed Vergers de Sennevieres to redeploy resources from this traditionally labour-intensive process into higher value post-harvest activities.

Global Pac Technologies, another Kiwi company, started marketing the Aporo produce packing robot in 2018 on behalf of Robotics Plus Limited.

Global Pac sales director Cameron McInness says this milestone is a testament to the partnership and collaboration between designers, supply partners and end-users resulting in revolutionary change to packhouses. “The Aporo produce packer is a market leader in loose fruit packing automation globally and its ground-breaking technology continues to evolve, bringing with it accuracy and speed,” he explains.

“[Aporo’s] compact footprint is ideal for retrofitting into existing facilities, as well as intuitive controls that minimise the need for operator intervention and a design that prioritises food safety – all attributes the industry asked for and the team at Robotics Plus has delivered.”

The company says it is active in eight countries around the world, robotically packing apples and stonefruit with more fruit types coming online soon.

“It is important that wevthank everyone who played a role in taking what was originally a doctoral study, commercialising the technology, and taking it to the world through our dedicated distribution partners,” McInness adds.

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