Fruit maturity is an essential factor for fresh retailers to make economical distribution scheduling and scientific market strategies. In the context of farm-to-door mode, the fresh retailers could incorporate the postharvest maturity time, picking time and distribution time to deliver high-quality fruits to consumers.
A recent study selected climacteric tomato fruits and formulated a postharvest maturity model by capturing the firmness and soluble solid content (SSC) data during maturing. A joint picking and distribution model was proposed to ensure tomatoes could arrive at consumers within expected maturity time windows.
To improve the feasibility of proposed model, an improved genetic algorithm (IGA) was designed to obtain solutions. The results demonstrate that the joint model could optimize the distribution routing to improve consumer satisfaction and reduce the order fulfillment costs. The proposed method provides precise guidance for tomato online retailers by taking advantage of postharvest maturity data, which is conducive to sustainable development of fresh e-ecommerce.