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Wave of interest in Kiwi company’s fruit sorting equipment

Wave of interest in Kiwi company’s advanced fruit sorting equipment

Auckland, February 4th 2014 – Kiwi company BBC Technologies expects to attract new clients at Fruit Logistica in Germany this week, on the back of a wave of international interest in its smart fruit sorting solutions.

BBC, the world’s leading supplier of blueberry sorting and packing machinery, will exhibit at Fruit Logistica for the fourth time this year. The event, which takes place in Berlin from 5 – 7 February, attracts more than 2,400 companies and 50,000 visitors from all parts of the world’s fresh produce value chain.

In terms of overall sales, Europe is BBC’s fastest growing region, says International Sales and Marketing Manager Jason Walker.

“As production of blueberries and other small fruit expands in Europe, customers are looking for advanced equipment like ours to handle both sorting and packing.”

BBC will be showcasing its new MIRA -360 machine which sorts for colour and identifies and removes defects including cracks and splits, soft rot, wrinkles and bruises and insect damage. It also sorts in multiple streams by size to ensure customers comply with standard industry sizing bands.

Also in action will be the company’s Fresh Tracker™ traceability software which can track individual products from harvesting and processing through to packaging and point of sale.

Walker says Fresh Tracker is resonating strongly with customers as demand grows for ways of minimising risk and ensuring fresh produce is of premium quality.

In addition, BBC will be talking to customers about next generation equipment soon to be released in the European market, including its new Dura-Touch Compact sorter, a high performance machine that removes soft fruit while ensuring all product is handled gently.

Testing has shown the Dura-Touch Compact rejects over 80 per cent of visibly undetectable soft fruit.

BBC’s key business is providing customers with turnkey solutions which combine its high-tech sorting and filling solutions with support products and Freshtracker.

Walker says all components of the company’s solution effectively ‘talk’ to each other and are both simple and efficient to use.

“Our offering is very attractive to cherry growers in Europe (which accounts for around 75 per cent of global production) as it gives them a range of options for presenting their fruit and helps them ensure their fruit is premium quality and lasts on the shelf,” says Walker.

He says BBC’s turnkey solutions are also increasingly sought after as blueberry plantings expand in Europe, particularly in the east where, for example, BBC has recently installed several new lines in Poland.

There will be five staff on BBC’s stand at Fruit Logistica – two from the company’s office in the Netherlands, one from its Chilean office and two from New Zealand.

Walker says having staff on the ground in Europe is paying dividends for the company.

“We can attend to sales enquiries immediately and it also allows us to maintain our company’s commitment to the highest level of service.

“We have a service manager based in Europe, supported by a mobile service team which comes to Europe in busy periods. That means when customers have an issue, they simply need to pick up the phone to our support team and help is at hand.”

BBC General Manager Geoff Furniss says despite Fruit Logistica being a “who’s who” of the fresh produce industry, BBC stands out as being different and effective.

“A number of potential customers have seen us for the first time at Fruit Logistica and been excited by our technology. Being there also adds to your credibility. Customers really like being able to meet us face-to-face,” says Furniss.

BBC has deep roots in the horticulture sector and owns 162 hectares of blueberries in New Zealand. It has been selling its technology in the United States for 13 years and also has established markets in Europe, South America and Australasia, with its equipment operating in 20 countries.

The company employs more than 85 staff in New Zealand and overseas and is actively recruiting to support its steady growth in domestic and offshore markets.

Fruit Logistica takes place from 5 - 7 February. Find out more at: www.fruitlogistica.de/en/

About BBC Technologies
BBC Technologies are specialists in the manufacturing and development of Advanced Processing Technology. The New Zealand-based company has a track record of investing in research and development to provide innovative solutions to the horticulture industry globally. Its equipment is sold and serviced throughout North America, South America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. BBC Technologies has a strong commitment to service and all its products are backed by industry-leading support. Find out more at: www.bbctechnologies.com

ENDS

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