US company sizes over 103,000 apples in one day using Spectre Top Down

Monson Fruit has claimed the Spectre Top Down record for the 2022 US apple season. 

The Washington State-based grower-packer used Hectre’s proprietary technology to size more than 103,000 apples in one day, at one single receiving site, straight off the top of flatbed trucks.

Image: Hectre

Spectre Top Down is Hectre’s overhead early fruit sizing AI solution. A camera installation is connected to Hectre’s computer vision sizing app, Spectre. Trucks arriving at the receiving site simply pass under the camera and their load is scanned.

On average, the technology detects and sizes more than 100 apples per bin, from the top layer of bins on trucks.

“Our teams are constantly reviewing the bin images Spectre Top Down collects, ensuring best practices are being followed, providing tips back to our customers and enabling optimal image capture,” said Matt Blomfield, chief executive and co-founder of Hectre. “Through that process we identify volume peaks, and we were definitely impressed when we saw Monson Fruit’s numbers that day.” 

Apples make up around 50 per cent of Monson Fruit’s business, with the company also specialising in cherries and pears. The company handles more than 180,000 bins of apples each season.

Jaritt Hays of Monson Fruit said the capabilities of Spectre Top Down far surpassed the company’s expectations.

“We had a healthy level of scepticism when we first heard about the Spectre Top Down app,” explained Hays. “We were worried it would be hard to implement. But the proof is in the pudding.

“We’re able to get huge size samples now as soon as the truck arrives, and ten times faster than our previous manual process. The results are very accurate, it’s so easy to use and the data helps us to make even stronger business decisions.”

Spectre Top Down is an extension of Hectre’s hand-held early fruit sizing app, Spectre, where an iPad is used to take a photo of a full fruit bin. Fruit is detected and sized, with results delivered within seconds.