06/07/2023 | Trends

TOMRA: Research Orchard opened

TOMRA Food has revealed the first details about its Research Orchard, the only facility of its kind run by a manufacturer of sorting and grading solutions. The Research Orchard occupies a 2.5-hectare (6.2-acre) plot in Waikato, New Zealand, next to the company's 5,100-square-meter Field Research Center, which opened in 2022. TOMRA Fresh Food's Field Research Manager, Richard Pickard, explained: “The orchard's purpose is to monitor the flowering and fruiting of plants at each stage, adding to our understanding of the core commodities handled by our sorters and graders. We will assess fruit defects, quality issues, and key characteristics such as flavor, sweetness, and firmness. This complements our Fruit Science program, which for ten-plus years now has been researching how the chemical and physical properties of fruit correlate with fruit quality and sorting requirements.”