Pallet containers play a pretty important role in the processing of citrus.
Florida citrus is bigger than most of us think. Did you know that the sunshine state provides 80% of America's orange juice? Drive down a Florida highway and there's a good chance you'll see a truck stacked with crates of hand-picked oranges. Filled with juicing favorites like the Valencia, these plastic harvest bins are likely on their way to the processing facility.
Remember the Old Wooden Orange Crates?
Wooden harvest bins are still in use but these days you're more likely to see replicas used for shipping Florida oranges to family and friends. The iconic gift boxes give a nod to the citrus industry's packing history. As nostalgic as they are, wood has given way to plastic for a reason. Splinters from the wood damaged the fruit and caused it to spoil. There were also issues with contamination. Keeping the wood crates dry so they would not mold was a challenge - especially in Florida's humid climate. Finally, wood containers have fallen out of favor because they break down and require maintenance and often replacements.
Plastic Harvest Bins to the Rescue
Today, when oranges are harvested, they are placed in ventilated plastic pallet containers. Full containers are then transported to the processing facility and placed on an automated belt that picks up the bin and dumps the fruit on a processing line. Here, fruit like sweet Florida navels are inspected, cleaned, polished and packed.
Here are more benefits from vented plastic containers:
As you can see, vented plastic pallet containers offer the citrus industry great benefits over wood containers.
Do you use plastic bins for harvesting citrus fruits or have questions? Let me know by posting your comments below.
Post by: Penny Peirce, Business Development
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