10 things to consider when evaluating a post-harvest processing line

The fruit and vegetable processing industry is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 7.1% from 2017, to reach USD 346.05 billion by 2022. For growers and processors that means considerable opportunity, but also greater competition in most markets as participants seek to maximise their return.

To stay ahead of this competition, fruit and vegetable processors are aware, they need to invest in line solutions that minimise damage to the produce, can be installed quickly and deliver a healthy return on investment over the lifetime of the equipment.

A line automation solution is custom-engineered for a produce handling operation and designed to integrate all parts of the processing line. A modern automated line reduces the need for manual intervention, helping increase throughput and process efficiency.

However, before a decision on the capital outlay is made for a line automation solution, multiple factors should be considered in putting together a robust business case for the investment. Some of them are:

  1. What are the most important business objectives – now and in five years?
  2. How will new equipment impact existing process flow and supply chain?
  3. What will be the total cost of ownership of a new automation solution and how quickly can we expect it to start delivering efficiency gains.

Wyma Solutions recently published an eBook: Investing in a post-harvest processing line, that reveals the 10 factors to consider when evaluating automation solutions for your pack-house operations. Use this eBook to prioritise your business’s wants and needs and understand the process of setting a timeline, to make sure you include all your considerations and key steps.

Also covered in the eBook are a. budgeting, b. costing, and c. the importance of servicing and warranties. Then it’s on to you and your business. Key areas include:

  • Your produce – how to choose the best equipment for your produce line.
  • Your environment – identifying the key factors that influence your produce.
  • Your soil – the type you grow your produce in will help determine the best equipment.

Your working capacity is an important consideration, and there’s a chapter that looks at your capabilities, and what kind equipment is needed to handle your capacity.

It’s also important to keep sustainability and efficiency considerations in mind, and the eBook looks at ways you can reduce your water and energy usage so you can operate more efficiently.

Building a business case, getting the right help and advice, staff training, finding the right provider and suppliers are key topics that are addressed in the eBook. There’s even a questionnaire aimed at helping you clarify your priorities, goals, budget and other factors that are essential to helping you make the right decision.

Taking some time to work through Investing in a post-harvest processing line will put you in a strong and confident position when it comes to choosing a post-harvest solution provider. Click here to download the eBook.

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