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Retractable Roof Solutions Now a Priority for Berry Industry

Retractable Roof Solutions Now a Priority for Berry Industry

2022-06-02

Article by: Hari Yellina

Hort Connections will be held in Brisbane, Australia, from June 6 to 8. Cravo has been exhibiting at this show since 2016 and is excited to be there again this year. According to Bede Miller of Cravo in Australia, “It is the premier event for the Australian and New Zealand horticulture industries, bringing together growers, market & industry development, research, and associated commerce.” “It’s a great opportunity to network and learn from everyone in the agricultural industry,” he continued.

Cravo’s low-cost retractable roof orchard and field models are expected to generate a lot of attention, according to Miller. “They’re at the top of the priority list, especially in the higher-value berry and cherry sectors.” It’s exciting to have the power to automate, optimise the environment, and protect against bad conditions in a matter of minutes. “In light of rising manufacturing costs and a manpower shortage, these considerations have become even more critical.”

Both the market and farmers are seeking for ways to improve output, first-grade packout, and fruit quality by manipulating harvest timing (firmness, brix, size). Reduced variable production costs, such as picking labour efficiency and worker comfort, are also important factors in achieving a favourable 5-year return on investment. Cravo can provide solutions to cover fields and orchards with over 75 different retractable solutions and over 40 years of experience. “The systems are ideal for areas where energy-efficient cooling and heat protection are most important, especially considering the rising cost of energy that traditional systems may use.”

Hort Connections returned last year after a one-year absence due to the pandemic. “We exhibited at the show in 2021, and the event was a success even if Australia’s borders were blocked.” This year, however, the stakes are higher. “With the borders open and travel confidence rising, we expect a surge in interstate and international visitors,” Miller said. People are looking forward to meeting in person again, despite the lingering fear of travelling owing to the pandemic. “In-person contact cannot be substituted at a certain level of human nature.”