Logistical Process of Harvesting and Distributing Avocados
The logistical process of the avocado harvest and transport is one that requires a lot of expertise which we have gained by working for years with our growers.
With the objective of having a closer approach and knowledge of the entire productive-logistical process of our avocado, in this section you will find a detailed description of the main steps from the harvest to the distribution in the main world markets.
Importance of Post-Harvest
The issue of post-harvest in fruit trees such as avocado is of equal importance to the agronomic management of the crop, since in this stage the effects of the practices carried out throughout the growth of the plant are reflected, specifically in the quality of the fruits.
The objective of post-harvest management is to extend the useful life of the products as much as possible, maintaining their quality from the moment of harvest.
Often after five years of establishment, the plantation is ready for its first commercial cut, meeting maturity criteria such as dry matter content in the fruit itself that is highly correlated with the amount of fat and (20.8% minimum required for Hass), it must be taken into account that for export purposes, the garden must be certified by the Local Board of Plant Health to which it corresponds (document which establishes among other things, free of pests and diseases of avocado , management of good agricultural practices).
The cut is made by hand using ladder or machinery cut the peduncle above the insertion with the fruit, during the process only people who enjoy good health participate; free of contagious diseases, in order to avoid contamination of the fruit in addition to this safe working conditions are offered.
The fruits should not be hit, suffer chafing or any other damage to the skin, for this reason the following steps are followed during harvest:
In addition to manual harvesting of fruits from the lower parts, they are also cut using rods with a canvas bag or sturdy cloth and a blade integrated into the hoop where the bag or net is inserted for the higher branches,
From the bag of the stick, the fruit passes to a canvas bag hanging from the shoulder of the cutter and from this it is transferred to plastic boxes located in shaded places; Again, the contents of the bags should be emptied carefully so as not to mistreat the fruit.
The fruit is left with a cut flush with the peduncle, without removing it completely preventing the entry of fungi and prolonging the life of the fruit.
It is recommended not to fill the boxes more than 90% of their capacity, to avoid that when they are covered and / or stowed, the fruit is compressed and damaged. The trailers or vehicles that transport the fruit inside the garden to the place of packaging should not be overloaded, ensuring the load perfectly
Once cut, the avocados must be transported to the packing house on the same day. The transport should generally be covered with a tarpaulin to avoid the direct rays of the sun or that get wet in case of rains, however, there should be sufficient ventilation to prevent heating of the fruit. During transport, the load must have a minimum movement so it must be secured. The loading and unloading maneuvers must be carried out with care avoiding hitting the boxes and excessive movement of them.