What we do in the packing shed.
Having navigated the harvest process and delivery to our packing shed we then ensure that our avocados are safely and securely packed. The trip through market systems around Australia can be tough on an avocado and we try to prepare them for the journey. All through the packing process we are trying to avoid bruising through a combination of careful handling and cooling.
Avocados that are cooled to 5oC are far more tolerant of bruising and less likely to rot as they soften. At Avowest our avocados are loaded into coolrooms as soon as they are harvested. Early in our harvest season (July) this is barely necessary due to cold winter temperatures. Sometimes it’s warmer inside the coolrooms than outside.
Precooling using coolrooms
From our bulk bins the avocados are gently tipped into a water bath to begin their journey through the grading and sizing machinery. This allows us to transfer the avocados from the harvest bins without bruising. The chlorinated water is also chilled to minimise bruising.
The water also helps to clean up our avocados.
Out the water they go
The packaging used at Avowest is cardboard trays with a moulded fibre insert. Both are made using a mixture of recycled and new pulp material. They are completely recyclable and renewable. They also absorb shocks and moisture to help us get our avocados to the customer in the best condition.
Avowest recyclable & renewable cardboard trays and moulded fibre inserts
Back in the coolroom
Once our avocados have been sized and graded into trays it’s back in the coolroom as soon as possible. Research commissioned by Avocados Australia clearly shows that maintaining the cool chain is critical for supplying the best quality avocados to retailers. Our avocados will stay in coolrooms until they are transported to ripening and distribution centres on refrigerated trucks.
Loaded refrigerated truck leaving Avowest