Seven separate images are taken of each product as it rotates under the camera. This multi-dimensional analysis allows us to measure size, colour grades and skin imperfections at lightening speeds and perfect efficiency.
Our turn-key solutions for electronic grading of small produce between 18-50mm is a unique offering to packers of produce such as olives, radish, sprouts, small potatoes, Mirabella, cherry tomatoes, nuts, etc.
Electronic grading and selection removes the requirement for sorting staff thereby vastly improving production and profitability. Our slim line colour separations of cherry tomatoes has proven to provide an average of seven days longer store shelf life.
GP Graders is an industry hot-house for Research and Development. With approximately 90% of our R&D projects embarked on becoming commercially successful. The entire culture of our company revolves around innovation and development of practical and market driven solutions.
A brief list from the hundreds of innovations we have bought to the market include:
- Our full-rotation conveyor cup on our AirJet™ rollers.
- Our unrivalled accuracy for optical sizing.
- Our ability to process 32 cups per second per lane.
- GP Graders are leaders in innovative solutions for each market we participate in. We will not enter a market unless we have something truly unique and beneficial to offer our customers.
And those solutions must either:
- Drive down costs through improved efficiency,
- Increase profit through improved product presentation and refined grading parameters,
- Be a lower cost alternative to what is currently available in the market,
- Meet a market demand that is not being satisfied,
- Reduce or eliminate manual processes to automated ones
- Despite being in business for almost 50 years GP Graders are a young and dynamic company recruiting only the most intelligent team members in their field of specialisation. We are fully abreast of the latest technology available and adopt it across our entire product range.
To obtain a regulated flow of cherries through the grading line, small produce is tipped onto a slow moving feeder hopper.
- Creep feed hopper has padded sides for gentle produce handling.
- A weight sensitive chute controls the hopper advance allowing an even flow of produce to the machinery.
- An elevator comprising of rollers carries an even constant flow of produce to the remaining machinery.
GP Graders Washing Units provide a thorough clean to the produce prior to grading.
- Washing units are precision built to delicately remove orchard grime and residue from the produce.
- Specially designed rotating brushes, detergent and water sprays effectively rinse the produce free of debris and grime.
- Stainless steel catchment trays store the water prior to being recirculated to minimize water wastage.
- Fungicide or other chemicals can be applied.
- High speed fans dry produce prior to grading.
Defect, Colour & Diameter Grading
GP Graders’ vision grading software classifies fruit according to any combination of colour, quality, diameter, length, curvature, diameter percentage and of course, weight.
The software operates on a Windows XP platform and includes the most advanced grading features available in the world today.
Intelligent and easy to use software coupled with high performance machinery provides precision grading.
Individual examination of each product using the world’s leading technology guarantees your most particular grading criteria are met.
Despite the sophistication of the underlying program the system is deceptively simple to operate. A range of pre-set fruit variety characteristics and default settings have already been included. This means most of the programming work has already been done for you. All that is required are basic adjustments of the grading parameters. The software includes a management reporting option allowing you to produce your own accurate packhouse accounting data and statistics.
- Each item is sized according to its commercial dimensions, the widest side of the fruit.
- Seven images of each item are taken as it rotates under the camera revealing its full surface area.
- The AirJet™ consistently achieves a 95% sizing accuracy.
Produce is separated according to colour using digital CCD colour cameras. For simple separation of green and red cherry tomatoes the user selects the range of colours from green, yellow, orange and red.
These colour grades are selected along with a size grade, thus combining the parameters for each outlet. More than one colour can be identified through selecting multiple colour bands within the full colour spectrum. This allows the user the ability to detect the percentage coverage of different colours on the item. Colour separation ensures that riper tomatoes do not spoil the entire punnet and effectively increase shelf life by an average of 7 days.
All defects are identified by variations in light intensity and colour. A user-defined colour spectrum for defect sorting is used to measure all blemishes with the aid of defect-sorting algorithms. We are working closely with our technology partner to identify more defects. Advances in defect detection can be added as a software upgrade.
Once the grading software has graded each item it is delivered to an exit dedicated to that grade by an air solenoid.
The air solenoid emits a burst of air which pushes the item into the exit.