Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Robots make light work of agricultural packing needs

February 1, 2017 by  
Filed under Machinery


Two versatile robot packing and stacking systems were unveiled at last month’s LAMMA 2017 show – capable of packing products in numerous sizes and formats.

Launched by Pacepacker Services, the Fanuc M410iC robot can stack anything from 25kg potato sacks to tubs of animal feed and bales of pet bedding. It can be fitted with different end effectors to suit any task – and easily moved to other areas as and when needed.

Also on show at LAMMA 2017 for the first time was the Fanuc M10 pick and place robotic arm. With a payload of 12kg and capable of picking and packing up to 80 items per minute, the arm can be also fitted with any end effector to suit the task at hand.

Pacepacker’s commercial manager Paul Wilkinson said: “For contract agricultural packers that serve a wide customer base and have to accommodate peak demands, case loading and palletising robots need to be able to react swiftly to varied products and packaging sizes.”

There are more than 80 to choose effectors to choose from. They include suction cups for loading pots into retail ready trays, and mechanical grippers for gently cradling fresh poly bags of produce, or delicately transferring potatoes and freshly harvested root vegetables into bulk display units.

Mr Wilkinson said: “Eliminating tedious and labour intensive tasks, these two robots can handle multiple products simultaneously, pick up different types of packaging, and can even place down the pallets and add layer or slip sheets, without requiring additional peripheral equipment.”