Weighing, sorting and packing equipment by Newtec has provided thousands of fruit and vegetable producers around the world with tailor-made solutions to transform their food into marketable and profitable end products.

One of Newtec’s latest installations took place in Australia this June when, together with its Australian dealer Proud Solutions, the company delivered four Celox-C-UHD optical carrot sorting machines to the site of Rocky Lamattina & Sons.

Rocky Lamattina & Sons has become a leading Australian carrot producer through a combination of hard work, experience and the highest quality technology. Within the highly demanding Australian carrot industry, the family business prides itself on being the nation’s most consistent carrot grower.

“When you get to a situation where you need to be processing up to 200t a day, you can’t have anything that’s going to let you down,” says the company’s managing director Angelo Lamattina, explaining the need for the best industry equipment.

Lamattina has been using Newtec weighing machines since the mid 80’s and had been following the Celox’s life since the day it started. When the time came to design a new facility that could efficiently meet the company’s packaging demands, his interest in the machine peaked.

“We had been in dialogue with Angelo Lamattina for some time,” explains Thomas Heinicke, Newtec’s head of sales and market development. “He is a long-term Newtec customer; he’s a very, very knowledgeable customer who knows exactly what he wants.

“When Angelo came and said he wanted to include the Celox machine in his new facility and his new big project, I must say we were very pleased, very happy and a little bit proud as well, because we know Angelo is the type of customer who is very thorough in everything he’s doing.”

New ways of offering carrots to the supermarket with Newtec’s optical sorting machine

The Celox-C-UHD optical sorting machine sorts carrots by their size, shape and surface quality. Its integrated next-generation visual inspection technology developed by Newtec-owned QTechnology inspects each product from three angles.

The cameras’ built-in computer technology accurately processes the collected data, allowing the machine to evaluate each and every carrot according to the grading parameters selected by the operator.

“We take all the photos from three different angles, and in doing so we secure that we have a full surface coverage of every single carrot,” Heinicke explains. With two cameras angled above each lane and one beneath, the Celox-C-UHD leaves no room for error.

“It brings a lot of value in the sense that you get the best use out of every single carrot in your production.”

After visual inspection, the machine redirects carrots to their correct outlets. With the 9+1 model, ten different categories of product can be sorted simultaneously, providing operators with the flexibility to sort products in the most profitable ways.

“It brings a lot of value in the sense that you get the best use out of every single carrot in your production,” comments Heinicke. “The reason why we say that is we evaluate, we photograph, measure and grade every single carrot in size, shape and quality at the same time, and that’s quite unique.”

While the highest quality products can be sorted for premium supermarket packs, lower-quality carrots can undergo the same grading. That way, the carrots with minor defects can be sorted from the waste carrots, minimising waste and optimising profit by allowing the operator to sell them loose or for food processing applications.

Optimised and consistent carrot grading at Rocky Lamattina & Sons

Following a sale through Newtec’s Australian dealer Proud Solutions, four Celox-C-UHD units were shipped from Denmark to Australia this June. Newtec was ready on-site to ensure that the installation, which is possibly the world’s biggest Celox set-up for carrots to date, went smoothly.

Since then, the Lamattina brothers, their father Rocky and the rest of the family have been incredibly happy with the equipment’s performance at their facility.

“We believe that the machine we’ve got now, which is the latest model, ticks all the boxes,” says Lamattina. “The quality of the actual machine itself, the reliability of it, the way it handles the product, the quality of the cameras, it is just well above our expectations of what I think a machine could or should do.”

“We believe that the machine we’ve got now, which is the latest model, ticks all the boxes.”

Lamattina expressed his particular satisfaction with the flexibility that the Celox has provided his business with. “We can also pull out different qualities of carrots for different situations where we’ve got people that want to use it for processing and other things that we can do,” he adds. “That has made a big difference on our pack out.”

“A lot of the value added in these machines is the consistency and the quality,” Heinicke says, summarising the key selling-points. “But it’s also the possibility for the customers to make special selections and play around with the product they have to really optimise the use of it.

“For campaign purposes, they can do special selections of the carrot for special types of packaging and so forth. The machines really provide the packhouses with new ways of offering their products to the supermarket.”

Overall, the Celox-C-UHD is the ideal sorting machine for carrot producers looking to automate pre-grading in a way that fully optimises their yield. With the Celox, consistent quality output and high product throughput are guaranteed.