Israeli company Eshet Eilon is able to look at fruit from the inside out with their technology that has the potential to help fruit exporters - along with consumers who looking for a fresh and tasty snack:
Using a sort of high-tech “X-ray” called spectral imaging, Eshet Eilon’s machines report on nutrition information, ripeness, quality, and even when – or whether – a piece of fruit will get ripe.
“Our sorting machines check everything there is to know about fruit — how much sugar, protein, or carbohydrates are in fruit, how ripe it is, whether there are any diseases or fungi, and other information that until now exporters could only guess at,” said [CEO Menashe Tamir]. “Ours is the first fast sorting machine that can check every single piece of fruit that goes into a shipment, ensuring that buyers know what they are getting, and that the fruit shipments don’t get sent back because they aren’t up to standards.” ...
Sorting is an essential function in the fruit business. Growers can sell better quality produce for more money, with “better quality” usually defined by color, size, ripeness, lack of bruising, and other external factors. With the Eshet Eilon sorters, said Tamir, growers can now add to that list factors such as sweetness, nutritional information (protein/carbohydrate/fat content), calorie information, and other data – not just with general data for “typical” fruit, but for each specific shipment.
“We can do five tons of produce an hour, checking every single piece of fruit,” said Tamir. “Other systems can do random samples, at best. With this technology, we can sort fruit according to level of sweetness or how long it will take to ripen, presenting buyers with better information that will help their sales. That’s a big value-added for any supermarket or fruit retailer, because they can more easily decide which fruit to put out and which to store for later on, among other things.”
Eshet Eilon pulls off this trick using near-infrared hyperspectral (NIR) imaging, a new system that over the past few years has been used to detect nutritional information in many kinds of fruits and vegetables. Eshet Eilon’s is the first system to implement this technology on a scale that enables wholesalers to check thousands of pieces of fruit at a time.