Jonika optimaliseert uiensorteerlijn met vijf QualityGraders van Flikweert Vision

Jonika optimaliseert uiensorteerlijn met vijf QualityGraders van Flikweert Vision

Oostdijk – Jonika, an onion packer based in Oostdijk[NL], has been researching the possibilities of optical reading and sorting for quite some time. “We were looking for a system that could be seamlessly integrated into our existing production line, without having to change the set-up,” says Jaap Nieuwenhuijse. The QualityGrader from Flikweert Vision turned out to be the solution. Since March of this year, Jonika has been using one optical quality sorter in the sorting line, and in the coming months the entire sorting process will be optimized with five QualityGraders and a new shaking sorter from Petech Machinery.

“We visited a potato processor who used the QualityGrader and we were immediately enthusiastic. We chose to integrate the machine directly into the sorting sequence, without first setting up a test setup. To be honest, we were under the impression from day one “I am impressed with the performance. We started during the previous harvest and the machine removed all bad onions almost immediately. Moreover, thanks to artificial intelligence that assesses the onions, the machine is still learning every day,” says Jaap.

“We are also pleased that we were able to place the machine within our current production line. Alternatives would often mean that we would have to adapt our entire facility. This machine is compact and requires relatively little maintenance. That is why we have decided to invest heavily in five machines. We look forward to the expansion with confidence. With these five machines we have enough capacity and options to process onions the way we want,” says Jaap.

Jaap Nieuwenhuijse: “Integration within the existing line was a priority for us”

Although the QualityGrader has mainly been used in the (seed) potato sector in recent years, the developers have also gained a great deal of knowledge in onion grading. “We are pleased with the opportunity that Jonika gave us to test the machine directly in the process. This is crucial for a good quality assessment. Their feedback has helped us enormously,” says Martijn Flikweert.

“Especially the practical applicability of the machine in the existing production line made the investment attractive for Jonika. Traditional sorting systems often include a manual inspection room and a post-consideration. With our QualityGrader we can replace the inspection part and we usually do not need extra space, while we do replace the necessary labor,” says Martijn.

“The great thing is that at Jonika we now have sorted both red and yellow storage onions, imported onions and onion sets. Characteristics and that is why it is essential that the machine’s assessment model learns quickly. Our experience built up in the potato sector has accelerated this process. The machine has proven that it can select the quality of both yellow and red onions in a short time.”

According to Martijn, the potential in the Dutch onion sector is great. “In the Netherlands, huge quantities of onions are processed and labor is a significant cost item, in addition to the fact that it is also difficult to find good staff. The machine never has an off-day. Because the onion rotates under the camera and the machine is undistracted , our cameras detect much more than the people on the assembly line.”

“Our focus is strongly on creating a very accurate quality sorting that perfectly meets the wishes of the customer. An important aspect is the ease of use. Our challenge is to sort each batch of onions according to the customer’s wishes for quality, with minimal input from the customer. The whole team is working hard on this challenge,” concludes Martijn.

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