Pacepacker designs robot solution for potato supplier
An economical and fully mobile Blu-Robot palletising system has provided Belmont Farms with a ‘Plug-and-Play’ robotic solution to handle up to 1000 tonnes of potatoes per year. The robotic palletising and conveyor system installed within a moveable frame by Pacepacker, has not only given the Peterborough farmer exceptional packing flexibility, which is easily moved around its 13 mile long site, but improved pallet/product appearance at the family-run firm.
Belmont Farms grow, grade, pack and palletise an annual crop of 1000 tonnes of potatoes, of which 600 tonnes are bought by UK fish and chip shops in 25kg bags and the surplus sold to bulk buyers.
Critically, the automated solution was required to palletise potato sacks at two separate potato stores located at either end of the farm. As a result, Pacepacker designed a unique mobile system, explains Pacepacker’s business development manager Paul Wilkinson, “When designing a heavy mobile system which incorporates a 2,500kg palletising robot, key considerations include safety and ease of transportation. Taking into account weight and footprint restrictions, we mounted the Blu-Robot palletiser, pick and infeed conveyors, control system and perimeter guarding onto a heavy-duty support frame in such a way that it could be easily transported between the farm’s two potato stores using a fork lift truck to load it onto the farms trailer.”
The entire Pacepacker palletising solution is capable of handling around 300 to 400 tonnes of potatoes per week, which for Belmont Farms, results in sizeable growth options.