Medipo Agras, based in Havlíčkův Brod in the Czech Republic, are potato packers who have recently replaced their old Herbert line with a larger intake grading system.
Medipo Agras produce high-quality, washed potatoes under the brand ‘La Fourchette des Gourmandes’. A long established company, they supply potatoes and onions for retail chains, supermarkets and wholesalers as well as directly to hotels and restaurants.
The new line has considerably modernised their production process, increasing factory throughput and improving product quality. The intake grader system was designed and built by UK-based Herbert Engineering, the leaders in agricultural handling systems. It comprises a bespoke intake hopper with extra low in-feed to accept their new trailers. The hopper was made with a double kink and super high flared sides to give them the flexibility of receiving product from a variety of vehicles and trailers.
The hopper feeds a presentation conveyor that helps spread the product out before progressing to star cleaning, size grading, inspection and secondary grading and box filling systems.
In addition to the intake system, the packhouse was updated with the installation of a Herbert 2000 Auto-sort electronic grader. The Auto-sort is capable of sorting up to 30 tonnes of potatoes per hour by features such as length, diameter, rot, cut, scurf, green and user specified colours. The installation of the Auto-sort has resulted in significant labour saving of up to 12 people for Medipo Agras and has considerably increased the company’s productivity.
Glen Burt, sales engineer at Herbert Engineering, said: “Medipo Agras are long term customers of Herbert Engineering and we have worked with them for many years and understand their business. We worked with them to design the new intake grading system to replace the previous one, which was very old and too small for their future plans. The installation of the new systems has resulted in increases in quality, throughput and overall productivity and profitability at the plant.”
Vlastimil Rasocha, Director of Medipos Agras, said: “We have used Herbert machinery for over 10 years. We have installed other equipment but the Herbert intake system and electronic sorter are the best we have found on the market. The new systems serve their purpose very well. We needed systems that would let our company grow and give a good payback and Herbert have delivered this.”
2012 marks Herbert’s 40th anniversary and the launch of a record number of innovative new products.
Source: Herbert Engineering