TOMRA sorter combines lasers and engineering

TOMRA Food is launching the TOMRA 5C – a ground-breaking optical sorter that promises to transform the nut and dried fruit processing industry in the Oceanian market. This roll-out of the new machine follows its success since introduction to selected markets in December 2019.

TOMRA Food regional sales manager for Australia and New Zealand, Steven Van Geel, said TOMRA was excited that it can now offer the TOMRA 5C to Oceania-based nut processors, following extensive pre-launch validation testing and very positive feedback from early adopters in California.

“This platform will make it possible for nut processors in Oceania – particularly those handling almonds, walnuts, pistachios, and hazelnuts – to detect and eject specific types of defects that were previously impossible to remove.

“With its enhanced optical sensors, machine-based learning and ‘TOMRA Insight’ for data analysis, the TOMRA 5C sets new standards for nut sorting. Our field engineers are ready to advise nut processors in Oceania how this sorting solution can enhance their operational efficiencies.”

Mr Van Geel said the TOMRA 5C premium optical sorter combines industry-leading sensors with machine learning and big-data analysis to ensure the most accurate foreign material removal possible. “With the TOMRA 5C, operators can view a clear picture of each and every individual product and foreign material – setting processors up to make real-time decisions that boost chances of a better profit, higher-quality yield, and fast equipment payback.”

"Our new machine redefines processing," said Brendan O'Donnell, global category director – Nuts at TOMRA Food. "We've developed state of the art technologies that make sorting more efficient, more effective, and more cost-conscious – all while addressing some of the biggest challenges of the nut and dried fruit industry such as labour, food safety and product quality. The future of sorting begins now."

He said the TOMRA 5C has incredible capabilities to see and analyse defects – detecting even the smallest imperfections, such as insect damage, due to its higher resolution lasers. These sensor design improvements also allow clearer visualisation and more precise colour sorting – a degree of detail unseen in machines of its kind.

The TOMRA 5C has been engineered to examine mass quantities of nuts and dried fruit with ease – greatly reducing the need for additional labour while maximising the amount of higher-quality product. Processors can expect to minimise handling, re-processing, and labour costs.

Scott Eastom, CEO at The Almond Company in Madera, California said the TOMRA 5C had had increased their almond processing by 20 to 25 percent, producing at higher volumes, in less time, with less labour required.

Mr Van Geel said this easy-to-use machine is designed to grow with a business's needs while handling up to twice as much capacity. “Additionally, thanks to simple clean-up and maintenance, the TOMRA 5C is a durable investment that will provide savings for years to come. TOMRA 5C's unparalleled design is also backed by a customer-centric service team that works directly with customers to understand their businesses' unique needs.

“TOMRA Insight, the cloud-based data analysis platform connected to the TOMRA 5C, allows processors to access actionable data that can be used to make informed business decisions. This powerful and integrated data platform proves its value month after month through improved output, greater efficiency, more uptime and enhanced troubleshooting.”

The launch of this sorting machine comes at a time when the market is expected to grow immensely. According to Jason Schenker – chairman of the internationally-respected Futurist Institute and president of Prestige Economics, global calorie demand is expected to rise by 44 percent in the next few decades.

He said reducing waste and improving efficiencies is essential for the sustainability of the world's food supply and processors' bottom lines.

TOMRA’s Brendan O’Donnell said the release of TOMRA’s new sorting machine in the Oceania market couldn’t come at a better time, just ahead of the season’s start in the southern hemisphere.

“Processors must take action now to keep pace with the global market’s demands,” he said. “With the TOMRA 5C, processors will be ready to tackle the rapidly changing expectations of consumers while protecting the viability of their own businesses."

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