A New Chapter In The Revolution

Published online: Jun 25, 2024 New Products
Viewed 405 time(s)

Three years ago, Dutch specialist machinery manufacturer Flikweert Vision launched the  QualityGrader. This new machine, which was the result of meticulous technological development, marked the beginning of a real revolution in optical sorting.

As a result, the  Dutch seed potato sector chose Flikweert Vision's optical sorting machines at lightning speed. Whilst seed potato sorting was automated, Flikweert Vision continued development pace to allow this technology to be used to sort onions as well. This too  became a success, and as a result a large proportion of onion procressors in the  Netherlands are now also using the QualityGrader. 

Striving For Excellence 

Striving for the best possible result is embedded in the DNA of the company, which is  based in the southwest of the Netherlands. To this is added a dynamic team with an eye  on the future, plus the unrivalled passion of the company’s three owners, and everything  is in place to create a progressive company which is constantly raising the bar of  technology and quality.

The latest example is an upgrade to the QualityGrader, with more cameras and enhanced computer power, which has greatly increased both accuracy and capacity. 

Camera Upgrade 

“Our ambition with the QualityGrader is to eliminate 100 percent of the manual sorting work for potatoes and onions, and with this upgrade, we are one step closer to making this ambition a reality,” says Martijn Flikweert, co-owner of Flikweert Vision. "The camera  upgrade, with double the number of cameras, is integral to this. These extra cameras mean that all products are monitored by at least two cameras. This means that defects are always clearly visible, which is not always the case when the product is only recorded  from one position. Addditionally, the potatoes or onions are assessed not Rive but at least ten times. Doubling the number of cameras thus provides a significant improvement in quality assessment." 

Computing Power Upgrade Doubles Capacity 

To process the increased data volume, additional computing power is required. As a  separate module a computing power upgrade is offered for this purpose which provides  the QualityGrader with six times more computing power. This more than doubles the  machine’s capacity, and makes the QualityGrader ready for the future. 

Further Development 

These upgrades create opportunities for further software development. According to  Martijn Flikweert, the next step toward fully autonomous quality grading lies in this  direction. "We have recently significantly expanded our R&D team, and therefore expect  to continue making useful advances,” he says. “Our ambition is no secret: we want to fully automate quality grading of potatoes and onions worldwide, and we will not stop until  this goal is achieved."

First Customer Experiences 

The upgrades have been extensively tested, and several customers are already using  improved machines, including seed potato producer Klaver Koeling of Kraggenburg in  the Noordoostpolder area of the Netherlands. The company’s Jan Mussche is pleased  with his experience of the updated QualityGraders.  

"Due to the clearly noticeable improvement in accuracy, we are convinced that this is a  major leap forward in sorting potatoes without human labor,” he enthuses. “We would  never want to go back to conventional grading. This is the future!” 

The upgrades are available now for both existing machines and as an option on new  QualityGraders.

For more information, visit www.Rlikweertvision.nl.