Tevel’s FAR (Flying Autonomous Robots) system will start harvesting apricots in Italy from June this year.
Tevel will start in June with pilots on apricots and then move on to harvesting peaches and nectarines. The flying robotic harvesters will eventually finalise operations in the area of Emilia Romagna also with pears in September, Simone Pollano, General Manager Europe for Tevel Aerobotics Technologies LTD, told Dutch website AGF.
Darwin wcdi (we can do it), a fruit harvesting platform creator and Tevel Aerobotics Technologies LTD have recently joined forces to create the world’s first fully commercial integrated autonomous fruit harvesting system.
Pollano told AGF for 2022 and 2023 they “feel ready for apples, nectarines, plums, apricots and hopefully pears. Commercial picking can start as of next year and we are taking in pre-orders for Italy and Spain. Our priorities will be to start with orchards conceived on ‘fruit wall’ systems and with companies that are technologically on the forefront (sorting house, logistics, and packaging).”
According to Pollano there is also a strong request from farmers around the world to robotise the harvest of avocados, citrus and kiwis, and Tevel is currently working on that.
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The Tevel robots are commercially available as a service of picking on a multiyear plan, and from the third quarter of 2023 they will be commercially available for purchasing. In Berlin Tevel presented its first partnership model whereby a harvesting platform producer “integrates” the FAR’s system of 4 or 8 drones. This integrated system will be used in the second half of 2022 as fruit picking service and will be available to be purchased for pre-orders to be taken as of next year.
Another operating model Tevel is looking at, is one where companies become partners of Tevel by offering fruit harvesting services to growers in certain geographical areas. This is to suit farmers who can or do not want to buy the machine. According to Pollano, the service provider will be able to accomplish the harvesting by getting paid for the direct labour cost portion of the picking task (in € /tonne considering that the system knows the single fruit weight while it is being picked). Revenues will be shared between the service provider and Tevel.
In 2020 Tevel Aerobotics Technologies won the Best Field Robot Concept Award.