Technology and innovation in fruit and vegetable sector in Chile

31 March 2021

As the demands of agribusiness change and continually become stricter, the need for a classification system to maintain or increase fruit volumes is unquestionable, achieving the highest accuracy. At Aweta – located in the Netherlands and Italy with production facilities and with more than 55 years of experience – we have the solution. The main objective is to understand the needs of its customers, continuously working on new developments and cutting-edge technologies, providing its customers with the latest technology in sorting and packaging solutions. Aweta delivers more sustainable, varied, healthy, and high-quality food to the world.

Part of Aweta's culture is innovation, so the company – which has sales and services in more than 45 countries around the world – develops advances that result in state-of-the-art technology, for example, the use of artificial intelligence, which is trained and learned from the fruit of its customers,  which provides a solution that best suits each user. Otto Vink, CEO of Aweta noted that "the face of agriculture is changing. A change that is charged by substantial growth of the world's population and growing demand for more varied, healthy and high-quality food". We believe we can respond to this appetite for change by pointing to an ever-higher standard for fruits and vegetables, he added.

selector de defectos delipack 2

The global fruit and vegetable sector and specifically Chile is changing. Fruit production is increasingly conditioned by climatic variables, in the case of the production of stone fruits in central Chile it is common to see the quality and condition of the fruit affected. Whether it is high summer temperatures or unexpected rains during the same pre-harvest season. To maintain the productivity of packaging plants, it is vital to be prepared, aligned, and have the technology to maintain productivity levels without the need to increase the amount of labor.

Therefore Aweta has several services that adapt to each need and strengthen production in the fruit and vegetable industry. In Chile, Aweta installed several sorting & packing lines that have the Ultravision camera system, which consists of a powerful vision system specially developed to achieve greater performance in the separation of the different kind of qualities and conditions of the fruit, while reducing labor costs, optimizing production, and improving productivity.

Ultravision: It is a sensor used for external quality, which combines the information obtained from many high-resolution images obtained from four different angles, thus achieving a complete view of each part of the fruit. In addition to all the technology for capturing images of the fruit it brings with it, it has a powerful way of processing the information obtained from the images.

Inscan Pulse: This is a spectrophotometric sensor that can detect and measure the near-infrared reflectance emitted by each of the fruits. This technique allows a quick and accurate prediction of the internal fruit quality, therefore, relating to the nutritional parameters of the fruit.

Humberto Troncoso – head of production at Delipack, located in Requinoa, Chile commented that the "Aweta Line was acquired at the end of 2018, to start the season of stone fruits and kiwi 19-20". The company has a 6-line Aweta grader for stone fruits, which is capable of processing 25 ton/h of fruit without the need for staff at a selection table. He has checked this on the ground with his satisfied customers. "It is advanced technology and meets our need for processes and packaging", he added. Regarding the rains and hails that affected fruit production in Chile and how he took advantage of the electronic defect selection system, Humberto Troncoso noted that "fortunately in conjunction with Aweta's technical support in Chile we have been able to advance the effective development of different neural networks". The system has an extensive library of defects that we have today implemented in our sorting systems. We understand that this is an ongoing job of learning, implementation, and improvement, he concluded.

Source: Portal Fruticola