Instantly Measuring Sugar Content, Acidity, and Weight
Kubota's Senka Kobo, a fruit grader with built-in fruit selector, is capable of simultaneously measuring sugar content, acidity, and weight.
"Sugar content meters found in large-scale fruit grading operations are very expensive, running over $250,000 for a single unit. Our sugar content meter is only around $12,500 per unit, so it can be used even in medium-sized farming operations. The machine uses optical sensors, shines a light into the tomato and analyzes the light that comes back to measure sugar content."
With a unit equipped with two fruit selectors, a single worker measuring tomatoes can process about 2,000 fruits per hour.
"The unit allows for expansion. You can add fruit trays, change the number of fruit selectors that measure the fruit, swap the touch panel for a PC, etc. Currently the unit measures only sugar content and acidity, but in the future we'd like to add features such as sorting based on measurements of spoilage or other defects."
The unit can measure the sugar content and acidity of tomatoes and apples, and the sugar content of fruits such as Asian pears, persimmons, kiwi, and loquats.
The standard model that uses a PC has one fruit selector and seven fruit trays, and is priced at around $63,750.