P. Desmarest, D. Derchue
Pernod-Ricard Group is interested by strawberry supply through its subsidiary SIAS-MPA which is the leader on the market of fruits preparation for yogurt. The Pernod-Ricard Research Center has been charged with studying the possibilities to cultivate and to harvest mechanically strawberries for processing. Since 1960/1970, lots of studies have been carried out by American, Canadian or European researchers to design and to improve harvesting prototype. At present, two main principles are distinguishable: 1) the single fruit harvesting by stripping, and 2) the total plant harvesting by clipping. The Pernod-Ricard Research Center has chosen the clipping method which is less demanding opposite cultivated varieties.

Started in 1986, our studies have been developed not only to adapt the solid-bed cultivation, but also to modify harvesting machines. These have been originally gotten is USA and Canada (imagined by R.L. Ledebuhr and constructed by Canners Machinery Limited/CML). In 1992, the Pernod-Ricard Research Center is cultivating a new strawberry cultivar "82-6-89" which is superior to Midway on agronomical and technological aspects. The harvesting machines, deeply modified, are now reliable and efficient.

Today, with yields established between 20 and 30 tons of fruits/hectare, a carried harvesting machine 80 cm width cutting device, is able to collect 20 tons per day at a competitive price.

Desmarest, P. and Derchue, D. (1993). MECHANICAL HARVEST OF STRAWBERRY IN FRANCE. Acta Hortic. 348, 273-273
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.1993.348.48

Acta Horticulturae