With the start of the cherry season in California, I thought I would share the Prima Frutta case study. Prima Frutta was Compac's first major cherry solution. The solution has been well received with now over 600 lanes globally.
The Sambado family founded Prima Frutta and have been growing cherries in California’s San Joaquin Valley since 1947. After establishing a reputation for growing and selling top quality produce A. Sambado & Son expanded into packing their own fruit for market. In 1992 Prima Frutta and Van Doren Sales teamed up to develop their first cherry sorting line with three more lines following. Due to the adoption of cutting edge technology Prima Frutta is regarded as an industry leader in the packing and marketing of apples and cherries.
|Watch our cherry case studies|
In 2010 Compac was engaged to retrofit an existing cherry sorter installed at Prima Frutta with a new Compac InVision system. This system significantly improved Prima Frutta’s ability to grade their cherries for color, size and shape, whilst increasing the throughput of their facility. In 2011 Compac was also commissioned to design and install two 5-lane MLS sorters with InVision 9000 for defect sorting to upgrade and expand Prima Frutta’s apple facility. Based on the strong relationship between the companies Prima Frutta again engaged Compac and Van Doren Sales to undertake an ambitious project, a complete line which would grade 50,000 cherries every minute by size, shape, color, softness and surface defects.
"The defect sorting on softness, spurs, splits and double can not be any better, it's phenomebal" - Lawrence Sambado, Owner, Prima Frutta
This was accomplished working with partners Van Doren Sales and A&B Packing, providing a best-of-breed solution. While the line is designed for high speed bin dumping of firmer varieties such as Bing, Stella and Lambert; the demonstrated ability to safely run delicate varieties such as Rainier and Royal Anne has boosted the ROI and added flexibility to their packing operations.
With the most advanced blemish sorting technology available to the industry underpinned by high quality, durable construction and after sales service this installation gives Prima Frutta a significant increase in throughput and the levels of accuracy and consistency of their graded product.
Since the original installation an additional grading line and large control system has been installed to drive further production increases without any additional labor. Data from Compac’s solution is integrated into an Inductive Automation Ignition SCADA platform to provide production data to employees on the plant floor, enabling them to quickly react to changes in size, quality or variety and guarantee the quality and consistency of every box of cherries.
Gentle, effective singulation: By combining a proprietary hydro-cushion and singulating V-Flume more gentle and effective singulation is achieved. This results in greater cup-fill with reduced recycle.
Dynamic Lane Balancing: This proprietary system dynamically controls a series of diverters to achieve a consistent cup-fill across all lanes of the sorter, maximizing throughput.
5 views of the cherry: The InVision 5-View combines high resolution cameras with a patented 5-viewing angle system for maximum surface coverage. The increased views, combined with cherry rotation enable accurate sizing and grading of each cherry.