This programme will develop new techniques to image the fine-scale structure of moisture distribution within vegetables and fruit to give growers the ability to assess the quality and ripeness of their crop before committing to harvesting and for production line companies to improve sorting and grading of produce during processing.
A hand-held device can be used in the field to assess dry matter content of fruit and vegetables, a critical measure of quality, to aid in harvest date decisions and limiting fruit loss, growing conditions and the detection of internal defects. A similar version will also be available to scan across processing lines providing the same information. In this case, a larger version can be constructed to increase the operating distance up to 1 metre or more. This research is being undertaken in collaboration with the University of Nice (France).