Kwekerij van der Waal in Zevenhuizen has recently commissioned a new cucumber container system, improving the quality and efficiency of their harvesting process. Designed and supplied by Taks Handling Systems, the new system uses automated technology to process cucumbers more efficiently and check for quality before putting them into casks and palletizing the casks.
In recent years, labor time was lost when stacking the crates. In addition, when working with crates, there was a risk of fruit damage and leaf breakage.
Fewer empty spaces on the supply belt
The new system actually starts in the greenhouse. Here, harvesting is done directly in containers instead of crates. The harvesting containers have been developed so that the cucumbers can be placed in them easily. This means within arms reach and with sufficient capacity to harvest a path length of approx—100 m. One container holds about 250-275 cucumbers.
Two full containers are driven to the start of the Taks system by a harvesting trolley. Initially, the loose container with second-choice cucumbers is pushed on top. Afterward, both containers are lifted and turned by a gantry robot to be emptied. The cucumbers are evenly distributed on the conveyor belt, where they are checked for quality before being put into barrels. Due to the number of cucumbers coming out of a container, there are fewer empty spaces on the infeed conveyor.
Labor time saved
As a result, the grader's fill rate is significantly higher. This directly results in fewer sorting hours per day. Because the picking process is organized much more efficiently, there is also a labor saving of at least 10%. Next, everything is palletized. This process is automated and efficient, resulting in less manual labor and less loss of product.
According to the owner of Kwekerij van der Waal, Hans van der Waal, the new system has improved the productivity of the growing company and has also helped improve the quality of the cucumbers. "The new system has helped us streamline our processes and improve the quality of our produce. Because the crates are no longer stacked over, it saves a lot of labor time. This allows us to better meet our customer's needs and offer them high-quality products."
For more information:
Taks Handling Systems
Etten-Leur, the Netherlands
Tel.: +31 (0) 88-5552000