random-access room

Interko has advanced its range of fresh fruit ripening rooms with the introduction of a flexible chamber that offers the added value of individual pallet control and can be designed to accommodate any fruit.


The Holland-based designer, manufacturer and installer says its new room is so flexible that users have the ability to control almost every pallet of fruit, which ensures products reach the supermarkets at the exact stage of maturity required.


Built to a so-called ‘random access’ design, the room benefits from a wide space in the centre that allows any pallet to be selected and removed at any time. This is in contrast to the traditional ‘last-in, first-out’ method commonly used to transfer pallets from a banana ripening room.


“With this room you can control pallets pretty much individually, unlike in a traditional banana ripening room,” points out Chris Maat, the managing director/partner of Interko. “This offers the added value of achieving the exact ripeness and quality for each pallet as demanded by the customer, and ultimately the consumer – whether that’s ready-to-eat or almost-ripe.”


The global provider of state-of-the-art fresh fruit cooling and ripening systems says this type of room can feasibly handle as little as one pallet, but is typically suited to either 7 or 14 pallets on a single level, or 24-30 pallets over two tiers.


Curtains can also be adjusted to the height of individual pallets, and operated both electronically and manually. The design of the room is also ideally suited to blast chilling.


The new room is intended to accommodate fruits that demand more individual ripening control.


“It’s ideal for ripening deciduous fruits like stonefruit and pears, as well as tropicals, including avocados and mangoes,” Maat explains. “Fruits that require the same temperature for ripening can be mixed within the same room too.”


Maat says the room marks another quality build from Interko; featuring its stainless steel coils for a long lifespan, while being able to integrate with the firm’s highly efficient fan technology.


Interko is already fulfilling orders of the system for pears and stonefruit. Customers include a large client in the UK, as well as a smaller supplier who is focused on local produce.


“We are looking for further customers who are eager to benefit from greater flexibility and individuality, and thereby raise their game in fruit ripening,” reveals Maat.


“The system suits small to large companies because its flexibility means it can be adapted to accommodate different fruits and different demands from customers with different logistics operations.


“It’s a very bespoke ripening room, which is precisely the tailor-made design, build and installation service that Interko offers.”