Sun Pacific, the Pasadena, Calif.-based owner of the Cuties brand, upgraded its Maricopa, Ariz., packing operations.

Sun Pacific adopted 64 lanes of the Spectrim platform and purchased a new grader for the Tulare, Calif., facility, for a total of 64 lanes of Spectrim technology from Compac, Australia.

"As our operations continue to grow, maintaining accurate, efficient technology has become essential," says Al Bates, president of Sun Pacific. "Sun Pacific has been working with Compac for 15 years. The Maricopa Cuties facility installed 84 lanes of 200-foot-long sorters between 2003 and 2005, making it the largest Compac installation in the world. We have been very satisfied with the performance and service of the existing sorter, making it an easy decision to upgrade to Spectrim."

Spectrim enhances the sorting process, putting the right fruit into the right pack without human intervention, thus improving accuracy, consistency of the pack and throughput and predictability of the packing process.

“There have been technology advances over the last 15 years that haven’t met my expectations. But over the last 18 months, I’ve seen Compac’s technology and I think it’s time to make the transition,” adds Bates.

Sun Pacific owns 30,000 acres and six packing facilities in California, supplying Cuties mandarins, Mighties kiwi and Air Chief table grapes and tomatoes to top U.S. retail and international export customers.

"The move to Spectrim has been a significant investment, but the anticipated increase in efficiency and improvement in quality should more than justify the purchase allowing Sun Pacific to continue as a leader in the industry," says Bates.

Building partnerships with customers and providing an evolving service package as the company develops new technology is key to Compac’s growth, according to Ken Moynihan, Compac North American general manager.

“We supply customers across the world with innovative, intuitive sorting and packing technology,” he adds. “It’s important that we remain ahead of the pack and build strong long-term relationships with our customers and work with them to realize the benefits of the continuously improving technology.”