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Grading of organic vegetables in Lithuania: How Skals is setting new standards for high-quality and flexible grading solutions

In June 2015 Skals delivered a brand new grading system to Kęstutis Juščius, Chairman of the Board, of the Lithuanian company AUGA Group, AB. The AUGA Group, AB is the largest of the organic farming and agricultural investment companies in Lithuania and one of the largest in Europe.

At the production facility Purpurea near Kaunas in Lithuania, the AUGA Group grows 120 ha of organic fields mainly potatoes, carrots, red beets and onions. The AUGA group companies are guided by a vision that environmentally friendly and sustainably grown foods should be available to everyone. The organic vegetables are sold to the Lidl super market chain.

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ASSIGNMENT:
The task was to build a high-quality, reliable and flexible grading system with the possibility to work in a variety of different modes. Because the system has to cope, with a variety of different shapes of vegetables, a flexible solution was required in order to handle different purposes.

Therefore, a special solution based on Skals standard components was designed. The system consists of an installation with a hopper – inlet for trucks, boxes and bags. From this point all of the products go directly to cleaning and inspection. Once the potatoes are manually inspected, the customer is able to choose, whether the products should go directly to the washing machine or to the grading and forward to the washing proces or to the boxes. The box fillers are equipped with automatic shifts, allowing the system to continue to run, even while shifting boxes.

Combining multiple functions within one grading system
The system allows the customer to either simply grade or grade and wash the products and to send unwashed and washed products from the packing line into boxes. Furthermore the system allows the customer to choose between filter drying or polishing.
In addition the grading system is prepared for the handling of onions. The ability to adapt the grading system to different vegetables to certain actions, was one of the main advantages in Skals’s offer.

Happy customers
Justas Piripavicius and Manvydas Bantasiks are both very satisfied with the grading system and their expectations for the result have been fully met. The grading machines are grading with high precision and it is essential for the production that they are able to get immediate technical information and quick problem solving to avoid down time.

Justas Piripavicius comments:

By ordering a grading system from Skals, we got more than just reliable grading products. We have also been consulted by a team of engineers and technicians with extensive product expertise. It is of great importance to us that we are always able to get technical assistance when needed”.

 

The solution:

  • Possibility of handling both washed or unwashed products (carrots, potatoes or beets)
  • Hopper – Inlet for trucks, boxes and bags – Suitable for backwards tipping and box filling
  • R Soil Extractor – Soil, sand, sprout etc. are effectively removed
  • RB Roller Inspection tables – Lightning ensures optimal working conditions
  • SDe Grader – Grading machine with Shockprinciple, which ensures optimal precision
  • SRD – diameter grading machine – Easy to install and perfect for grading of carrots
  • ABF Even flows – Optimized operation and less flow stops
  • VTX – Drum washer – Effective and gentle washing
  • TF – Felt roll dryer – removes the excess moisture
  • DP2000 – Double boxfillers – Automatical box switch by turntable functionality, which ensures that wide boxes are evenly filled
  • FDS box fall dampers – automatically open and close using compressed air. To be activated with a remote control from a truck

The results:

  • Customized and flexible solution with the possibility to work in a variety of different modes
  • Optimization of precision and efficiency
  • Improved working environment – no noise and easy to service
  • High efficiency in production = No stops
  • Excellent service