Automation of routine operations in the nursery has been increasing for a while in the United States, where technology company Harvest Automation has developed a pot moving robot, the HV-100, which can ensure accurate plant spacing time after time.
“By the beginning of the big, spring growing season, we’ll have approximately 30 customers and nearly 200 robots productively operating in the field,” said Harvest Automation’s Product Management Director Matthew Aprea. “Tasks that previously were not completed, such as on-time spacing, weeding and pruning, are able to be accomplished on time, and as a result, customers are producing a higher quality product with the same workforce.”
One of the reasons for the relatively rapid uptake of the technology is the development of the Robot Rental Program developed by the company. “For those taking their first look at robots, the program represents a low-risk way to evaluate the productivity gains that they’ll see with robots,” he adds. “It also allows their workforce to become comfortable with operating robots.”