Grimme UK and the Haith Group have revealed their latest major joint project – an innovative mobile optical sorter.
Designed to automate the removal of stone, clod and foreign debris from potatoes and help growers cope with labour shortages, demonstrations of the new Pro Sort are now being organised.
At the heart of the Pro Sort is a Tomra 3A optical sorter that’s capable of handling up to 100t/hr with high levels of accuracy.
The Tomra 3A employs near infra red (NIR) multi-spectral sensors for an unobstructed assessment of every object ‘in flight’, seamlessly identifying between potatoes and foreign material. As well as debris, the 3A’s colour sensors can also detect green potatoes, which like the debris, are removed at the end of the conveyor belt by intelligent finger ejectors.
As the Pro Sort is a modular unit, it can be used either in the field or on a farm, and be easily integrated into a new or existing grading line.
“We’ve developed the Pro Sort in response to the increasing number of growers who’re finding it incredibly difficult to find people to sort and pick their crop before it goes into store or is delivered to processors,” Haith’s managing director, Duane Hill, said. “We’ve a proven track record of developing innovative mobile washing and grading equipment and having integrated the Tomra 3A into many of our grading projects, it was logical to put it at the heart of this unit.”
Haith have worked in partnership with Grimme on the development of the Pro Sort.
“Our collaboration with Haith is all about developing complete solutions that help our customers do things better,” Grimme UK’s managing director, Patrick Graf Grote, said. “The Pro Sort is a perfect example of this ambition. We’ve developed a solution that’ll save growers both time and money and allow them to operate efficiently despite the widely reported labour shortage.
“The Pro Sort can be used as a standalone machine, combined with our receiving hopper and CleanLoader, or added easily to a Haith line. Having spoken to several customers about the Pro product line, we’re confident it’ll be very well received and the demonstration days later in the year will be very popular.”