In these trying days of drought, growers and machine manufacturers are forced to re-think their design and priorities when it comes to new machinery development. Now a greater priority has to be given to water-saving means and methods - from cleaner harvesting through to efficient filtering and water recycling in the washing process in order to minimise overall water consumption without jeopardising the need for proper sanitising of the product.
A produce washer has been developed between Tripax Engineering and Butler Market Gardens for washing whole heads of lettuce and bunch products to remove soil and foreign matter from the heads before packing. Because of the effectiveness of the water recycling, Butler Market Gardens was able to receive funding from the Smart Water Fund contributing to development and, finally, purchase of the machine.
The washer consists of a conveyor belt travelling through a wash tunnel equipped with a douching shower head and then a series of water sprays from several directions ensuring the product is thoroughly washed.
The spray force in the shower head and the sprays can be adjusted to ensure a gentle wash for delicate products through to a vigorous wash for other products.
The belt speed, as well as the water volume circulation, is easy adjustable via frequency inverter controls.
The water is collected in catchment trays and passes through two screens before entering the recycle water tank underneath. The tank is divided into three compartments to ensure an efficient step-by-step settling of soil and sand in the compartments. Finally, the water passes through a 100 micron cloth filter pot before recycling into the washing section.
Phone: 03 9760 6700
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