• ABC: Robots are being used in the production of fruit and vegetables

    A robot used in the production of fruit and vegetables
    Fiona Pepper

    Robots are being used to streamline the production of fruit and vegetables. 

    There are many repetitive, labour intensive jobs when it comes to packing fruit and vegetables, but robots could soon take some of the load. 

    Andrew Taylor, an engineer from Auto Control Systems, has been designing these robots.

    He described the robot as an arm “which is really good for picking things up and putting them down”.

    However, he said the difference between this arm and a lot of much bigger robotic arms was that it could work alongside people.

    Larger robots were often much too dangerous to work in close proximity with people.

    Mr Taylor described plans for a robot to assist in the packing of strawberries, which could be an incredibly arduous task for an individual.

    “They have quite a labour intensive operation,” he said.

    “Also, they have a very large turnover of staff, they have a lot of trouble with training, they have a lot of trouble with people doing what’s basically a terribly boring job.

    “Obviously, if your entire job consisted of standing at the end of the line and taking a small box of strawberries and putting it into a pallet, you probably don’t last very long.

    “But it’s something that the robot can do 24 hours, seven days a week.”

    While Mr Campbell admitted the setup could be costly, he said in most cases businesses saw the return on investment in less than a year, given the improved productivity.

    Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-08-17/a-robot-used-in-the-production-of-fruit-and-vegetables/6702762 

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