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Cran handling capacity upgraded

Ocean Spray’s Richmond receiving station has more pools and three incoming lines to speed up sorting during harvest.

Ocean Spray’s new receiving station able to handle 50 percent more fruit in the same amount of space as former facility. By Judie Steeves

Richmond in time to process this year’s harvest has “all the bells and whistles,” reports BrianMauza, agricultural scientist for the


he new $26 million Ocean Spray cranberry receiving station that opened in

co-operative in B.C. Just six kilometres from the old

facility in Richmond, the new one is half again as large in terms of its receiving capacity, although the building is the same size at 25,000 square feet. There are more pools and three incoming lines to speed up sorting during harvest and increase capacity, he explained. Total daily capacity for the new

facility is more than three million pounds, or annual capacity of nearly 100 million pounds of cranberries. Growers will have shorter wait

times when delivering their fruit to the new receiving station, plus there is room on the new site to store totes etc., notesMauza. Included in the new facility is equipment to sort and screen

cranberries as well as the means to bin all outbound fruit, which will have a cost advantage. Previously, custom binning had to be done elsewhere, but the new plant has a bigger footprint. New scanning equipment helps

sort berries by colour, and is the prototype of a system that may be installed at plants throughout North America. The expanded capacity ensures

that the co-operative is positioned to meet all fruit receiving and cleaning requirements for the immediate future. In the coming couple of years, new

plantings of cranberries, many including new varieties which are expected to be higher producing vines, will be coming online.

British Columbia Berry Grower • Winter 2012-13 9

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