Robotic operation hits a major milestone

Friday 24 Nov 2023

Global Pac Technologies, a New Zealand-based company, started marketing the Aporo produce packing robot in 2018 on behalf of New Zealand inventor and manufacturer Robotics Plus Limited. This is the same company behind the development of the world's first automated log scaling machines, fixed and mobile, commissioned by Mount Maunganui-based ISO Limited.

Global Pac Technologies have just hit a major milestone, having packed one billion pieces of fruit. 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. Aporo is now active in eight countries around the world, robotically packing apples and stonefruit with more fruit types coming online soon.

Cameron McInness, Sales Director at Global Pac says the milestone is a testament to partnership and collaboration. “This significant milestone points clearly to collaboration between designers, our leading post-harvest automation supply partners, and end users resulting in true industry change and transformation to a typically highly labour dependant part of the packhouse”.

The Aporo has a compact footprint that 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. “These are all attributes the industry asked for and the team at Robotics Plus has delivered” adds McInness.

“It is important that we take a moment to pause and thank everyone who played a role in taking what was originally a doctoral study, commercializing the technology, and taking it to the world through our dedicated distribution partners”

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

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