Key Technologies' VERYX sorters are designed for fresh-cut processing. ( Courtesy Key Technologies )

Key Technology is introducing a new line of digital sorters for fresh-cut leafy greens.

The VERYX belt fed sorters can inspect product in the air with top and bottom sensors to detect and eliminate foreign material and product defects. The integrated systems are designed especially for leafy greens, according to a news release, maximizing accuracy and eliminating false rejects.

Leafy greens present a challenge because leaves overlap or “clump,” according to the release, and top sensors can miss foreign material if it’s under some of the leaves.

“VERYX achieves true full-surface inspection of the product stream — no (foreign material) can hide from its sensors,” Marco Azzaretti, advanced inspection systems product manager at Key Technology. “VERYX systems have been successfully processing leafy greens in facilities worldwide. They’re field-proven.”
VERYX sorters are available in different sizes, with the highest-volume equipment sorting up to 18,000 pounds of fresh-cut leafy greens an hour. The sorter has multi-sensor Pixel Fusion, which combines pixel-level input from multiple cameras and laser sensors. The system can pinpoint foreign material including insects, animal parts, plastic, wood, rocks and other materials, according to the release.

The sorter also alerts line operators to defects and blemishes, including tipburn, decayed leaves and leaf discoloration.

The VERYX sorting systems can be configured for a number of leafy greens, but operators can also program a variety of greens and salad mixes with “fast and accurate recipe-driven changeovers” to the line, according to the release.

The sorters can leverage Key’s Information Analytics, a set of data acquisition and connectivity capabilities allowing users to compile product data, which can be analyzed off-line.

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