Protec: quality in tomatoes vegetables and fruit sorting other customized solutions

Mr.  Luigi  Sandei  is  celebrating  50 years  as the business owner, he began  his agro-industry operations  in 1965, an Italian  self-made man, he celebrates  his personal achievements

Now  25 years old,  the  Italian  sorting equipment company Protec has already made  its mark all over  the world,  a time of achievements  and new challanges.

Was founded in 1990 out of the passion and the approximately 20 years experience of an outstanding professional in the agro-food sector: Luigi Sandei. Already the first European manufacturer of self-powered, optically sensing tomato harvesters, Mr. Sandei decided to apply his personal experience to the production of the first optical sorters for use in the tomato processing industry.

From then on, development has not slowed down. Quite the contrary; backed by this wealth of acquired experience, and investment in ideas and resources, development has continued year by year. In an effort to surpass the targets already achieved (over 3000 installations world-wide) by Protec and its united team, we are focused on one of the company’s primary objectives; to provide reliable and effective solutions to their clients.

This continual research has opened up the way for the application of our technology to other previously unconsidered products. In addition to tomatoes, it is now possible to sort whole fruit, tomato and fruit pulp, extrusions, purees, jams, leaf vegetables (fresh or dehydrated), legumes, diced fruit and potatoes (in almost every form).As a result, a simple product such as a tin of peas or a pot of jam, which people buy everyday, embodies a high level of technology aimed at achieving the highest quality. In our machines this technology translates into a sophisticated system of artificial vision which is being continuously developed and that can be adapted to the most advanced production lines.

Sorter for whole tomatoes, fruit and vegetables

This machine is capable of sorting tomatoes according to desired color. Depending on the application, it can reject either product of incorrect color or any foreign bodies from the product stream. The range of application is very wide; from tomatoes in general to peeled tomato, and to red peppers. This family of sorters includes both single vision systems, that inspect the product on the upper part, and double vision systems that inspect the product on both the upper and lower part. Each vision unit is equipped with a brush cleaning system for the periodic cleaning of the optical sections. The belt conveyor moves the product flow through the optical inspection system and to the ejecting unit. The exclusive electro-pneumatic ejection system with “fingers” has proven to be the most effective for average dimensioned product, such as industrial tomatoes. For products of smaller dimension, such as small tomatoes (“cherry”) and red pepper, the ejection is carried out by means of an air jet. The operator interface is easy and user-friendly and allows modifications to all parameters of the sorter. The various equipment functions are mechanically as well as electronically changeable in order to meet all the customers’ different needs. The product capacities vary according to size of the machine; with four different widths: 20, 30, 40, and 60 channels.

Protec systems require minimal maintenance: the vision units are independent in order to increase their reliability and the systems include self-diagnostic functions that notify the operator of any possible problems. Due to the remarkable number of systems we have installed all over the world, we have acquired a great deal of experience in order to constantly keep Protec machine up to date with the various requirements of the industrial world.


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