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Dried fruit packer exceeds product inspection requirements

17 September 2017

Turkish dried fruit packer, Anatolia AS, needed to ensure it had a comprehensive final quality inspection solution for its bulk packing operation before its products are exported worldwide. 

The rising popularity of pre-packed dried fruit has increased demand for its products from supermarkets, along with suppliers need for ever more stringent inspection procedures to be implemented.

Anatolia has met, and indeed exceeded, the high food safety demand of its retail customers with the introduction of new inspection technology including laser sorting and X-ray systems, in order to remove or minimise fruit stems, broken pieces or out-of-spec sizes, and to identify discolouration.

The most critical food safety objective is to identify and reject any foreign bodies such as stones, glass, metal and plastic which are often accidentally introduced into the supply chain during harvesting and sun-drying, or during the logistics process that brings product to Anatolia’s pack house from a variety of orchards and vineyards. 
One of its customers requested improved sensitivity levels and more reliable inspection capabilities – in particular to detect 2mm stones in raisins and sultanas supplied in bulk to Japan. The company was advised by the customer to look at Ishida X-ray inspection equipment. 

The availability of a stock machine allowed Anatolia to assess the Ishida IX-GA-4075 in its own factory.  Initial test results demonstrated the system’s reliability in particular in detecting 3mm glass, 2mm stones and 1mm metal pieces. 

After adaptation of the machine to a bulk specification (including a suitable reject system and guarding), the IX-GA-4075 was installed on the bulk packing line with the specific objective of carrying out a final product inspection to detect any last foreign bodies that may have slipped through the upstream inspection process. 

The bulk line is running at around 4-6 tons per hour in single eight-hour shifts and in two-shift mode during peak production times and the IX-GA-4075 enables Anatolia to consistently detect smaller mineral stones, glass and metal.

Commenting on the solution, Koray Oz, project manager for Anatolia, said: “The machine’s software is user-friendly and stable, allowing operators to easily navigate through product settings and enabling line engineers to quickly carry out fine adjustments.”

Ogan Ceryan, plant manager for Anatolia, said: “As much as laser sorting technology has been a ‘game changer’ for us in the early days of our production, so has X-ray technology more recently proved to be a game changer in terms of food safety and brand protection.  More importantly, we have been pushing Ishida engineers from day one to find even smaller low-density contaminants and we are now working with the company to find the next game changer in food inspection technology.” 

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