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Invention: New picker goes wild with wolfberries

By Hu Dongmei in Yinchuan and Zhao Xinying | | Updated: 2020-08-07 16:57
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A set of efficient tools for harvesting Chinese wolfberries with little loss is attracting attention in Zhongning county, Ningxia Hui autonomous region.

The hand-held picking machine, which was invented by Ningxia's science and technology department, is replacing labor-intensive hand-picking, which accounts for 40 percent of the cost of the berries.

With soft vibrating prongs, the new picker shakes berries loose to get the ripe ones to fall off while leaving the remaining green fruit, leaves and branches of the berry bush unharmed.

The device is easy to carry and operate and it can cover a large area, running for eight hours on a single electrical charge.

The vibrating prongs are made of special food-grade materials.

In tests, the small machines can harvest 25 to 30 kilograms of Chinese wolfberries per hour, with no more than 5 percent of the fruit damaged. It is three to five times more efficient than hand-picking.

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