06 Feb 2017

METHODS OF BLUEBERRY HARVESTING

 

METHODS OF BLUEBERRY HARVESTING

Mission BC is the home of farms of varying sizes and operation facilities.  Due to the diverse operation facilities in these farms, planting, pruning, harvesting and other farm operation are done in many different ways.  The popular methods of blueberry harvesting in Mission BC are by shaking-and-catching, hand picking, machine picking, and catching. Therefore, to Buy Blueberry income producing farms in Mission BC is worth it, as there will be enough harvesting means for harvesting and market for the harvested blueberry produce.

Blueberry Harvesting Methods

There various methods of blueberry harvesting, here below are the common methods used in mission BC for blueberry harvesting.

blueberry farms abbotsford and mission

1.    Hand Picking Method

The hand picking blueberry harvesting method is regular harvesting method used in family owned farms and sometimes in large commercial farms. It involves careful selection of matured and the ripe blueberry bunch from the many berry bunches on the tree. To begin, curve your hand in a cup shape under the berry bunch to harvest, gently roll off the stuck from the tree in a way that the berry bunch will fall into your cupped hand. use the thumb of your hand to add pressure on the stalk of the berry bunch that you are gently rolling off to make detaching very easy. Once the blueberry bunch detaches, it will drop into your hand, then place the berry bunch gently into your harvesting pan or bucket. Ripe blueberry bunches come off or detach from the tree without stress. Therefore, once you attempt rolling, the berry bunches easily come off.  Instead of using your hand alone, you can use handing picking tool like blueberry rake for increased harvesting speed. About 40%-50% of commercially grown blueberries are harvested with hand picking method in mission BC.

blueberry farms abbotsford and mission

2.    Machine Picking Method

The machine picking blueberry harvesting method involves the use of mechanical or electric driven tools for ripe Blueberry collections such as the mechanical vibrator used with the catch frames rollers for shake-and-catch and other self-propelled machines. Machine harvested blueberries have shorter shelve life; this is why it is the least used harvesting method of harvesting in Mission BC. Only large Blueberry farms with enough space for the motorized or machine harvesting device to move about and turn, are farms where machine picking can be used as harvesting method.

blueberry farms abbotsford and mission

3.    Shaking-And-Catching Method

Shaking-and-catching method involves the use of blueberry catch frame placed under the blueberry tree to catch falling berries when the branches of the berry tree are being shaken. The catch frame is a roller frame that harvesters can roll about to the location of it needed for use each time. Most berry traders who buy Blueberry income producing farms in Mission BC adopt this method of blueberry harvesting in their farms. To shake the blueberry branches, the stems or branch of the blueberry that the catch frame is placed under is gently tapped, ripe blueberries drop willingly as the tree shakes when tapped. Tapping can be done with a hand-held rubber hose. Some large farm harvesters use mechanical vibrators that are air driven or electric driven to gently shake the blueberry tree instead of the hose. A gentle shake per time is required to avoid too many blueberries falling off per time for easy catch-frame berry catch and to avoid possible blueberry losses.

Pervinder Khangura @ homeZfinder