Pepper packing app manages pepper sorting, grading, washing, packing, sales & logistics, invoices, pepper traceability, and pepper quality inspections.

Pepper packing app manages pepper sorting, grading, washing, packing, sales & logistics, invoices, pepper traceability, and pepper quality inspections.


[Pepper packing app] 

[Flower packing] 

[Food manufacturing]  

[Meat packing]  

[Farm management]  

[Fresh produce RFID]

99% less fresh produce packing waste

Accurate fresh produce & food inventory management reduces fresh produce waste through better FIFO stock rotation, stock-takes, and inventory alerts. RFID pallet control (optional) for precision inventory tracking. 

Save time packing fruit & vegetables

Increase the efficiency of fresh produce inventory using options like scanning incoming bar-codes to reduce data entry & errors, integrate with scales for automatic weighing, ore RFID for automatic fresh produce inventory tracking.

Better fresh produce quality control

Guarantee quality fresh produce packing with flexible fresh produce inspection  testing systems from your cell or tablet. Customer feedback management, supplier quality control and more...

Reduce fresh produce packing errors

Project required inventory (and potential shortages to ensure correct fresh produce raw materials), schedule orders to be packed in batches, automatic alerts to production line managers for waste and batch analysis.

100% accurate fresh produce order shipping

Shipping teams are guided through the dispatch process.  Pick orders using a cell / tablet, PC, (optional bar-code scanning), automatic picking, auto email or print bill of lading, invoice, send automatic shipping notifications for customers, transport, and sales teams.

Reduce fresh produce packing administration costs by 40%

Automatic generation of fresh produce labels, pallet labels, bill of lading, invoice, picking documents, export documents, and more; reduces administrative burden.

Easy audit & mock recall systems reduces compliance costs.

Faster fresh produce inventory storage  inventory

Accurate fresh produce & food inventory management delivers reduced waste and increased employee productivity. Manage FIFO, improve stock-take accuracy, scan harvester data, and keep a watchful eye on your inventory... Easy stock-take identifies shrinkage and helps reduce waste from ageing. 

100% accurate fresh produce traceability

Maintain strict fresh produce traceability and high food safety standards always. Perform recalls based on lot/batch, pack date, invoice #, inventory #, pallet #, delivery date, purchase order #, or perform a recall on your own user defined data. Perform instant recalls both up and down the supply chain. Makes audits easy and instant. COVID-19 food safety & auditing available. 

Reduce fresh produce waste by 99%

Inventory control ensures there is no 'shrinkage', food inventory is FIFO managed, and expiring inventory always monitored.

Increase customer satisfaction

From increase fresh produce quality control systems, to online portal for customer orders, shopping carts, and quality feedback.

Better fresh produce quality now

Quality control and food safety has never been easier with built in industry standard quality tests, food safety checklists; or ask your consultant to  configure inspections to match your requirements.

100% accurate orders!

Guarantee only the correct inventory is shipped for each order, on time, every time.

No more rejections from deliveries to customers because a pallet has some incorrect inventory on it.

Pepper packing app manages pepper sorting, grading, washing, packing, sales & logistics, invoices, pepper traceability, and pepper quality inspections.

Farmsoft fresh produce packing app is for fruit & vegetable packer, processor, import/export.  Full fresh produce traceability, auditing, inventory control, and fresh produce business management app.

Quality inspection for fresh produce

Consistent and accurate quality inspection ensures higher customer satisfaction and adherence to industry, de-facto, and in-house quality control standards. Track supplier quality performance, customer feedback & complaints, create QC tests for any part of the fresh produce & food manufacturing process (incoming goods, raw materials, finished goods, expiry test, export/shipping tests), daily factory hygiene, machinery calibration, employee checklists... 

Fresh produce logistics

Manage orders, pack to order, picking and auto picking, dispatch & shipping process. Generate invoices, bill of lading, pick slips, export documentation and other sales documents... Dispatch teams are guided through the dispatch process ensuring every order is filled perfectly, and on time. Paperwork such as BOL, freight documents, export documents are automatically generated based on the customer and destination to guarantee no rejected shipments or issues at borders.

Fresh produce labels

Generate fresh produce SSCC pallet labels, GS1 case & PTI labels, bin labels, batch labels, traded unit labels, harvest labels and more. Use the built in industry standard labels for Walmart, Woolworths, Aldi, Tesco, Loblaws etc - or design your own with the built in label & report designer. Our team can design all of your fresh produce documents (including export documentation) to ensure farmsoft matches your requirements perfectly.

Fresh produce packing control

Sales, Quality, Profit, Dispatch, Pack, Farm...... Dashboards for sales teams provide instant impressions of customer orders and current inventory levels. The dispatch dashboard helps plan shipments, order of loading, and transport companies & drivers... The Profit analysis dashboard shows margins per unit and most profitable customers. Use our API to access your data however you like.

Fresh produce batch packing

Project required raw materials needed to pack/manufacture orders, potential shortages, schedule multiple orders to be packed in batches on selected production lines with a few clicks, automatically send new job alerts to managers, schedule additional harvests, analyze outstanding orders. Manage entire packing and manufacturing process with ease.

Fresh produce alerts monitoring

Automatic alerts for shipments can be sent to customers, transport providers, or even team members. Every time a batch is finished processing, receive an alert with the pack-out breakdown and percentages of grades & quality and waste. Alerts can include simple shipment notifications, or even invoices and original order details. Other alerts include order changes/modifications, yield reports, new order alerts, and low inventory alerts... 

Farm app option

Implement the farmsoft Farm Management suite to provide a comprehensive integrated business management solution from seed to plate. Includes automatic task management, best practices, budgeting, farm inventory, PHI enforcement, audits, residue reporting, USDA reporting, dashboards, farm profitability,  unlimited farms & companies, traceability, recalls and more... 

Fresh produce supplier quality control

Suppliers must know that your business measures & tracks their fresh produce quality at all times. Any trends that effect the quality of fresh produce can be quickly detected, automatically traced back to the fresh produce supplier (especially if a result of a customer complaint / feedback), management and purchasing teams are automatically alerted when a supplier quality issue occurs. Quantify and analyze your suppliers performance using the Supplier Quality Dashboard. 

Fresh produce finance apps

Share fresh produce finance data by direct integration with Xero finance app, or export AP & AR to Quickbooks, MYOB, SAGE, Multiview, Saasant, from the interface, or use our API to integrate with any finance or other app through inhouse or outsource, or request our team perform a custom integration for your fresh produce company. This is an optional module, please ask your consultant for additional details and discuss your specific requirements, additional costs apply for integration with new apps.

Fresh produce RFID

Automatic tracking of each pallet’s exact location. Makes loading orders accurate and easy, stops errors during shipping. Very low costs to setup your hardware using farmsoft’s innovative RFID for fresh produce solution. Pallets put onto truck are auto added to order, and checked for accuracy. Pick up a pallet and its RFID instantly selected. Add pallet/bin to production line and its auto added to batch for traceability.

Fresh produce API

Integrate with virtually any other app or software solution, or hardware using the farmsoft API. It's open! Anyone can use it. Your in house I.T. team, or any external I.T. vendor you want to help you with integration. Add your own reports, extract special data, or even create new interfaces between farmsoft and any app such as accounting, payroll, B2B, B2C. Other integration in farmsoft includes the ability to integrate with selected weigh scales to capture fresh produce net delivery weights.

Fresh produce bloch-chain

Increase customer confidence and prove the credentials of your traceability integrity and transparency with block-chain ledger technology.   We use the blockchain solution. (Optional module not included with standard Packing / Food Manufacturing ERP solution - please discuss your requirements with your fresh produce farmsoft consultant).

Improve fresh produce production planning

Efficient management customer orders, and the ability to analyze orders gives you new production planning tolls in farmsoft. Ensure each order is filled to exact specifications, on time, every time. Increase customer satisfaction and retention, and reduce stress in the packhouse with confident production planning using work orders/batch orders, sales contracts, sales orders, and sales order items. Are you manufactruing or processing chili products? Try farmsoft for chili processing. 

Accurate fresh produce traceability

Quality officers are guided through the quality control process, presented with images and instructions for each test, ensuring they know what to look for at all times, corrective actions are presented if a quality issue is detected. This makes training new fresh produce quality control officers fast, and ensures consistency in the quality control management processes for incoming fresh produce, post pack/post processing, storage, and dispatch. 

Efficient use of fresh produce cold stores

Maximize your cold store use and rotation of stock using farmsoft's pallet maps, and precision traceability tracking with expiring inventory reminders.

Cold store management software for fruit importers, exporters, packers, cross docking, and short and long term fruit storage.

Map cool rooms in 3D including row, column, and optionally level for stacked pallets.

Pepper packing app manages pepper sorting, grading, washing, packing, sales & logistics, invoices, pepper traceability, and pepper quality inspections.

The farmsoft inventory control app provides business wide quality management inspection systems for fresh produce, food manufacturing, seed processing, meat packing & processing, and flower packing.

Tesco food safety compliance food packers
Tesco food safety compliance for food manufacturers, packers, import, export, wholesale.  Tesco customers expect us to only sell products made to the highest quality and that are responsibly sourced. They trust us to ensure that all our products are safe and comply with all the applicable laws and regulations.

Within Tesco we have a number of highly skilled teams and colleagues across the globe that are dedicated to ensuring our customer expectations are not only met but exceeded. They manage the quality of products from the original product concept right through to our stores and customers.
Although this page is based on our UK business, a similar approach is taken across our international markets whilst ensuring all legal and cultural differences are acknowledged and catered for.  
Fresh Produce Bar Code Scanning

Fresh produce bar code scanning in agriculture easily delivers improved traceability in the fruit boxing and fresh produce packing space.  The FarmSoft team has add new features to the FarmSoft packhouse mobile (smart phone, iphone, tablets, and PDA’s) interfaces and new interfaces for in line bar-code scanning to allow rapid recording of packed fruit and vegetable via bar-code systems. Implement FarmSoft to make your fresh produce fruit packing easier and more efficient. FarmSoft delivers bar code scanning for packing sheds, packhouses, and fruit packers, exporters, importers and wholesalers.

Bar-code traceability

FarmSoft bar code traceability is rapid to implement, and easy to maintain. Implementing FarmSoft bar code traceability for fresh produce processing delivers increased accuracy of traceability, easy inventory management, and can result in reduced fresh produce waste.
FarmSoft bar code traceability provides multiple fruit labeling solutions which can be tailored to meet client inventory handling requirements.

Case level traceability

Case level traceability brings fresh produce processors, packers, and marketers easy and rapid traceability. Implement FarmSoft in no time at all, and start reducing processing waste!  Easy to deploy, farmsoft case level traceability is the best friend of any company looking to improve traceability in their food / fresh produce processing enterprise. 

Farm to fork traceability for reliable food safety and best handling practices for fresh produce – while reducing waste and increasing efficiency!  FarmSoft’s farm to fork traceability solution delivers bullet proof fresh produce traceability management in every way. FarmSoft’s farm to fork traceability solution channels staff through the correct farming and fresh produce handling processes ensuring maximum food safety and traceability is being maintained at all times.

Combine both FarmSoft Farm Software AND FarmSoft Fruit Packing Software to create a complete farm to fork traceability solution.

Fresh Produce Traceability India – FarmSoft’s fresh produce management software brings new levels of traceability and efficiency to Indian farming and fresh produce packing, processing, and exporting.  FarmSoft guides users through the fresh produce handling procedures to ensure the safest, highest quality fruit and vegetables with minimum waste. From quality control, waste analysis, to fresh produce labeling – FarmSoft delivers for professional fruit and vegetable processors and packers. Download FarmSoft’s Fresh Produce Traceability India specifications here.

FarmSoft India
Professionally manage and monitor all post harvest processes including quality control, storage, inventory, sorting, grading, washing, packing, sales, invoice, and dispatch.
Traceability requirements matrix fresh produce

Traceability requirements matrix fresh produce packing, processing, value adding.   Traceability requirements matrix fresh produce
Traceability requirements matrix in fresh produce

Makes fresh inventory food safety compliance & audits easy.
Traceability requirements matrix fresh produce
Traceability requirements matrix fresh produce.
Blockchain for fresh produce traceability

Visit our official fresh produce blockchain site for the latest fresh produce blockchain information.
Ask your farmsoft consultant if your chosen block-chain protocol or format is supported.
Blockchain – Essential for Fresh Produce Traceability
The Produce Traceability Initiative, was designed to help the Produce Industry maximize the effectiveness of current traceback procedures, while developing a standardized industry approach to enhance the speed and efficiency.
Food Traceability Software

FarmSoft food traceability software delivers bulletproof food safety and reduces business risk.  The FarmSoft is built on a solid platform of food traceability and safety standards. FarmSoft guides users through the food processing and manufacturing phases. The FarmSoft food traceability software suite specializes in processing and manufacturing involving fresh produce, fruit, and vegetables. Dried, cured, juiced, pulped, or even made into value added jelly and jams. Click here to download food traceability software specifications.

Fresh Produce Traceability Bar-code

Fresh Produce Traceability Bar-codes for fruit & vegetable packers, processors, and food manufacturers.  Fresh Produce Traceability is much more than applying a label to the packed fruit or vegetable. FarmSoft delivers strict fresh produce traceability guidelines for supply chain end to end food safety & transparency.

Ensuring that the traceability chain has no gaps in it is important to reduce the risk exposure of your business. If there is a breach in the traceability chain, then the whole traceability enforcement system has failed and becomes a pointless expense. FarmSoft ensures 100% accuracy of traceability throughout the entire life-cycle of fresh produce, from pre-planting, to post sales traceability guideline adherence. FarmSoft ensures your business is not unnecessarily exposed, while minimizing compliance costs. 

GS1 Traceability for fresh produce

FarmSoft GS1 traceability system does much more than just print labels! Manage your inventory, maintain traceability, pack, process, and store fresh produce. Perform sales and dispatch and invoicing. Reduce fresh produce waste.  FarmSoft GS1 traceability system does much more than just print labels! Manage your inventory, maintain traceability, pack, process, and store fresh produce. Perform sales and dispatch and invoicing. Reduce fresh produce waste.
farmsoft makes fresh produce GS1 traceability easy!

Increase the efficiency of fresh produce deliveries using options like scanning incoming bar-codes to reduce data entry, save time, and reduce errors. Scan incoming fresh produce deliveries or use "one touch" rapid inventory creation screens to increase accuracy & reduce data entry time.

FarmSoft track and trace provides end to end supply chain transparency for fresh produce traceability. Implement FarmSoft to guarantee the highest level of traceability both up and down the supply chain!  FarmSoft track and trace is a comprehensive fresh produce business management solution that caters for all operational processes from quality control, inventory, sales, dispatch, and orders. FarmSoft even provides food manufacturing, good manufacturing management, and value adding features. FarmSoft track and trace software provides many innovative features to bring easily maintained benefits to the fresh produce processor, packer, and marketer.

Using the FarmSoft traceability code, customers, and end consumers can track and trace fresh produce simply by scanning a QR code with their smartphone. The track and trace system will then present the customer/end consumer with the traceability or marketing information as chosen by the packer. This helps to improve customer confidence and provides supply chain transparency to promote the concept of food safety.
Produce Traceability Initiative PTI

Produce Traceability Initiative (PTI), HACCP, GlobalGAP, CanGAP, EuroGAP, BRC, Bio-Terrorism, ISO and more…Simple PTI solution - software for fruit and vegetable processing

Farmsoft delivers opportunities to reduce waste during the packing, processing, storage, and distribution phases. By enforcing best practices, FIFO (when practical), inventory expiry monitoring, and easy stock takes - your company has every opportunity to minimize waste and maximize profit. From bar code managed inventory, inventory labeling, to 3D pallet storage, farmsoft delivers on reduced waste.
Perform recalls in seconds, with the full confidence of accuracy and reliability. Minimize risk by ensuring accurate traceability is automatically captured. Pass audits with ease & reduce compliance costs using farmsofts traceability guidelines. 

Inventory traceability software for reduced post harvest waste

Inventory traceability software
The purpose of the Fruit & Vegetables implementation guidance is to provide best practice guidelines for industry-wide adoption for New Item Listing and update of existing assortment. This guide provides support to companies seeking to electronically exchange fruit & vegetable product information in accordance with GS1 Standards. The guidance applies to the full range of fruit & vegetable trade items. The guide outlines which attributes should be used for fruit & vegetable items and recommends best practices for the use of these standards to exchange static fruit & vegetable data between suppliers and retailers. Today, different platforms as well as different means to item identification exist when it comes to data sharing. Traceability case study for Paramount Citrus, Traceability case study for Mother Earth Organic Mushrooms, SunFed visibility of produce throughout supply chain with case and item level traceability. 

Simple traceability solution

Simple traceability solution - software for fruit and vegetable packing
Processors and packers involved in the fresh produce industry deal with a lot of compliance and traceability issues. If the worst happens and a product recall needs to be effected immediately, they have to be able to trace where the raw ingredients of fruit and vegetables came from, what was done to them, when and where the finished products have gone.
Fresh produce processors and packers manufacturers are subject to quality audits and they can often practice recalls and food safety incidents. From a business perspective, these activities often can be expensive and cumbersome to comply with, without the use of a simple traceability solution that is integrated into the businesses fresh produce handling processes and guidelines.

Less waste, more traceability

Less waste, more traceability: Full featured software for fresh produce processing, packing, sales, export/import & distribution.  MINIMIZE FRESH PRODUCE WASTE

For handlers of perishable goods, reduce waste during packing, processing, cold store, order picking and dispatch phases. Enforce GMP and best practices, FIFO (when practical), inventory expiry monitoring, and easy stock takes to help minimize waste and maximise profit. Receive detailed alerts when waste is encountered through quality issues, or possible human error.

Fresh produce export documentation

Farmsoft makes fresh produce export documentation easy with new features that generate international standard fresh produce export documentation for fresh produce producers, processors, and packers.   Rapidly generate fresh produce export documentation on demand!

Farmsoft makes fresh produce export documentation easy with new features that generate international standard fresh produce export documentation for fresh produce producers, processors, and packers. The modern packing and processing facility is busy environment. Dealing with the excess of export regulations and paperwork requirements can often be a headache.

Reduce fresh produce waste, Orders - Quality - Production - Sales & shipping - Recalls & audits - Dashboards, analysis, business intelligence.   Reduce fresh produce waste, make production and shipments 100% accurate

Strict inventory management ensures FIFO and no orphaned fresh produce inventory, no loss of inventory due handling processes.
Production management ensures every order is filled accurately, dispatch is planned in advance, and correct shipments dispatched on time, every time.

Harvesting Bell Peppers
Bell peppers are harvested by hand into harvesting buckets. In this case, they are harvesting red bell peppers, so they are looking to select peppers based on the color. They can harvest them before they are fully red and they will turn fully red within a few days. As you can see below, not all of the bell peppers ripen/color up at the same time, so multiple passes (typically, 3-4 passes) are made through the same field to harvest the peppers.

Bell Pepper Ripening on Plant
How are bell peppers harvested?
They are harvested by hand, without the use of any clippers.

How many times are the same plants harvested? In other words, how many passes are made through the same field?
The same plants are harvested 3-4 times. Not all of the bell peppers ripen on the plant at the same time, so the workers go through and harvest them once they reach the desired color.

How do you know when bell peppers are ready for harvest?
For these red bell peppers, it is all determined based on the color of the peppers. As the bell peppers grow, they start out as green and change color to red as they ripen. They can harvest the peppers when they are almost fully red and they will continue to change from green to red after harvest (although they do not continue ripening after harvest).

Processing and packaging peppers
Developing and sharing knowledge
The jury found that the company deserved the business award because they develop and share knowledge and collaborate with colleagues and industry partners to further develop the bell pepper production and the greenhouse vegetable sector.

Fresh bell peppers

Only ripe peppers are harvested
The length of time between removing the peppers from the plant and delivering them to buyers is minimal. This is because 4Evergreen itself cultivates, sorts, packs and delivers the product to the customer. Because this process is so fast, 4Evergreen delivers her bell peppers with the best possible guarantee of freshness. Bell peppers which are growing on the pepper plant today could be in the supermarket tomorrow.

Bell pepper harvest

Production and packaging in one location
When the bell peppers are ripe they are removed from the plant. This means that the bell pepper has the right size and color. An unripe bell pepper is green, after 5 or 6 weeks the pepper turns red, yellow or orange. The color of the bell pepper depends on the cultivar that is grown, for each color there is a different cultivar. After the bell peppers have been cut off the plants, they are moved via automated transport vehicles to the packaging facility.

Processing bell peppers

Harvested peppers are immediately cooled
In the packaging facility the bell peppers are processed. The peppers are cooled, sorted by size, weight and color as soon as they have arrived. 4Evergreen processes bell peppers of 5 different colors: green, red, yellow, orange and also the unique “red-yellow striped”: concept:1. The entire process is fully automated and controlled by computers. Cameras ensure that the bell peppers are sorted with precision and by size.

Bell peppers in flow pack, shrink seal or loose.
4Evergreen has designed a machine to package the product. This way, we package bell peppers per piece but also in mixes of 2, 3, or 4. When 2 or more pieces are packaged, these are often combinations of multiple colors which we call bell pepper mix. We have the ability to supply flow pack packaging and shrink seal packaging from our own cultivation sites to retail. This way we can deliver fresh produce daily, minimize quality loss and increase shelf life.

Top quality bell peppers

Quality is guaranteed by international certificates.
The bell peppers are packaged in accordance with certificates Global-Gap, IFS, QS and BRC. Since 2005, we are experienced in packaging and offer maximum care for the quality of our products. With our four production lines, we can produce sixty tons of packaging daily. The products that are to be packaged are put through a certified check weigher to ensure the weight of the packaging. The packaging labels can be assembled as desired. All barcodes, fonts and languages are possible. Finally, you can have your packages delivered to the customer in a variety of cases or boxes.

Sustainable business operations

Full harvesting carts with freshly cut bell peppers drive automatically to the barn.
The bell peppers are buffered here for sorting or offered directly to the sorting machine. The harvesting carts and the buffer operate fully automatically without manual intervention.

Bell pepper sorting machine

4Evergreen has a large sorting facility.
In this video, red bell peppers are automatically sorted and packed into boxes. The boxes are filled automatically by weight.

Packaging bell peppers in flow packs

Bell pepper packaging machine
4Evergreen can supply bell peppers in flow packs. We supply, among others, mixed packs with three colors of bell peppers (traffic light), or packaged per piece. This video shows you how bell peppers are individually packaged. We can sticker your information directly on the packaging.

Do bell peppers continue ripening after harvest?
No. They are non-climacteric and do not continue ripening after harvest. The color change that can occur after harvest is aided by warmer temperatures instead of the use of ethylene, which is common for the degreening of citrus fruit.

Bell Pepper Packing in the Field
When bell peppers are packed in the field, they are taken from the field directly to the harvesting rig, where packers are working to pack the peppers into boxes. The main thing the workers are focusing on is checking for quality as they pack, since they are packing for three different markets at the same time. The packers have three boxes set up at a time, and each one represents a different market.

Bell Pepper Packing in the Field
There is also an additional quality control step, where a designated worker takes a sample of the harvested product to check for any issues, such as shriveling, decay, insect damage, sunburn, bruising, and much more.

You can see the full process in the video below.

In the example above, everything is packed up and ready for the cooler once it leaves the field. However, other operations harvest their bell peppers and send them to a packing house to be sorted and packed.

Bell Pepper Packing in the Packing House
When bell peppers are packed and sent to the packing house, they arrive in large field bins and go through a scrubbing step and additional sorting steps. You can see an overview of the process below:

The bell pepper packing process in the packing house is as follows:

Box Formation – Boxes are formed in house. There is a machine that is designated for box making. Once the boxes are formed, they are transported to the packing area.
Product Arrival – The product arrives at the packinghouse via bins from the field. They are brought into the facility with a forklift that places them in line for the bin dump.
Bin Dumping – The bins are dry dumped onto the machinery and are transported on a conveyor belt.
Brush Step – The initial conveyor belt consists of brushes that scrub the exterior portion of the bell peppers.
Sorting – There are two sorting areas. The first is where the culls are sorted out. While, the second determines which market the bell peppers will go to (e.g., primary or secondary), and removes any additional culls.
Packing – Bell peppers are either hand packed for the primary market, or machine packed for the secondary market.
Palletizing – The bell peppers that are packed by hand for the primary market are palletized in the packinghouse and taken to cold storage. While those that are machine packed are sent outside on a conveyor belt, where they are palletized and taken to cold storage.
Cooling – The packed bell peppers are stored in the cooler until they are shipped, where they are force-air cooled.
Bell Pepper Packinghouse Overview
Bell Pepper Packing
Bell Pepper Packinghouse - Brush Step
Bell Pepper Packinghouse - Sorting
Bell Pepper Packinghouse - Packing
Bell Pepper Packinghouse - Forced Air Cooling
Featured Grower Information
I would like to send a big thank you to Illume Ag and Uesugi Farms for allowing me to visit, gather and share this footage. Illume Ag grows bell peppers and table grapes, among other crops, throughout California in the Bakersfield and Coachella areas. Uesugi Farms bell pepper packing house was located in Gilroy, California, but has unfortunately gone out of business since my visit.

The invention discloses a method for processing green peppers. The method comprises the following steps of: (1) pepper harvesting: picking fresh green pepper fruits 5-15 days before the peppers ripen; (2) washing: washing with water within 230-1,430min after being harvested to remove impurities; (3) pretreatment: scalding the fresh pepper fruits in the step (2) with hot water at 80-100 DEG C for 2-10min, cooling and drying; (4) freezing: freezing the dry fresh pepper fruits obtained in the step (3) for 240-720min at -18 DEG C; and then freeze-drying at -30 to -40 DEG C until the water content is lower than 8 percent. The method for processing the green peppers has the advantages of short time, high efficiency and better pepper rehydration property, and moreover, microorganisms are not easy to infect in the processing process, thus the hygienic quality index of the products can be guaranteed; most important, the processed peppers have seductive green skins, strong hot taste and pure fragrance; and the invention increases the varieties of pepper products in China and can earn foreign exchanges through export and promote the economic values of the peppers. 

By definition, 'processing' does not involve harvesting. However, one cannot produce a good product from badly harvested materials. Correct harvesting techniques could be said to be the most important factor in the production of a high quality final product. The main problem is immature harvesting.

Immature harvesting

The main reasons for immature harvesting is the fear of theft. If the crop is picked correctly when it is mature the higher yields and higher value of the final product may offset the losses due to theft.

Through extension officers, correct harvesting should be encouraged.

However sometimes immature pepper receives a higher price than mature pepper due to purchase by food processors due to its higher percentage of flavour components.

Correct harvesting

The pepper spike should be picked when one or more of the berries start going yellow/orange. The berries should be hard to the touch.

In most countries the harvested pepper berries are removed from the spikes before drying. This can be done by hand, beating with sticks or trampling on the pepper spikes.

A clean product is essential. The major problem for the export of pepper by small-scale farmers is the production of a sufficiently clean product.

The first step is to remove dust, dirt and stones using a winnowing basket, see Figure 1. This can be done in the same way as for rice. Someone used to this work can remove the dirt, dust and stone quickly and efficiently (they can clean over 100kg of pepper in an eight-hour day).

Figure 1: A cabinet dryer

There are machines that can be bought or made that can remove the dust, dirt and stones. However, for a small-scale unit, winnowing the crop by hand is the most appropriate system.

After winnowing the crop needs to be washed in water, for quantities of up to 50kg a day, all that is needed is two or three 15 litre plastic buckets. The crop should be washed by hand and drained two or three times. For larger quantities a 1m³ sink/basin with a plug hole needs to be constructed. This can be made out of concrete. However, the water must be changed regularly to prevent recontamination by dirty water. Only potable water should be used.

The pepper berries can be blanched before drying by dipping them in boiling water for ten minutes. This accelerates the drying and browning of the berries. However, the fuel costs may be prohibitive.

This is by far the most important section in the process. The inability to adequately dry the produce will, at the very least, slow down the whole process and possibly lead to mould growth. Any pepper with even a trace of mould cannot be used for processing. The sale value of mouldy pepper can be less than 50% the normal value. In extreme cases, the whole crop can be lost. To get the full black colour of dried pepper it needs to be dried in direct sunshine. This can be achieved by sun drying, solar drying or in a combined solar and wood burning drier.

Figure 2: 'Exell Solar Dryer'

During the dry season, sun drying is usually adequate to dry the produce. The simplest and cheapest method is to lay the produce on mats in the sun. However, there are problems associated with this method. Dust and dirt are blown onto the crop and unexpected rain storms can re-wet the crop.

A solar dryer avoids these problems. The simplest type is the cabinet solar dryer, see Figure 1, which can be constructed out of locally available materials (eg bamboo, coir fibre or nylon weave).

For larger units (over 30kg/day) an 'Exell Solar Dryer' could be used, see Figure 2. However, the construction costs are greater and a full financial evaluation should therefore be made to ensure that a higher income from better quality spices can justify the additional expense.

During the wet season or times of high humidity, which often coincides with the harvest of the spices, a solar dryer or sun drying can not be used effectively.

An artificial dryer, which uses a cheap energy source is necessary. This may be a wood or husk burning dryer or a combined wood burning and solar dryer. Figures 3-6 show a combined wood burning and solar drier which is based on the McDowell Dryer and has been used in Sri Lanka.

Figure 3: Combination wood and solar dryer, complete with solar cover

Figure 4: Wood burner and chimney

Figure 5: The food trays

Figure 6: The drying cabinet

Over drying
Care needs to be taken to prevent over drying of the crops which results in the loss of flavour components. A drier operator will soon learn how to assess the moisture content of the crops by hand. The final moisture content should be less than 10% wet basis.

In some cases the crop needs to be graded, eg high quality packaged products.

Pepper is graded by size, colour and relative density. Colour grading will have to be done by hand. Machines can be bought or made that will grade the pepper according to its size or relative density. However, a trained person with a winnowing basket is more appropriate for small-scale production.

Grinding may also add value but must be done carefully as there are difficulties. A whole, intact product can be easily assessed for quality whereas a ground product is more difficult. There is a market resistance to ground produce due to fear of adulteration. This can only be overcome by producing a consistently high quality product and gaining the confidence of customers. There are basically two types of grinders - manual grinders and mechanical grinders. A grinding mill has to be placed in a separate and well-ventilated room because of dust.

Manual grinding mills

There are many manual grinders that could be used to grind pepper.

An experienced operator can grind about 20kg in an eight-hour day. However, this is hard and boring work. A treadle or bicycle could easily be attached to the grinder, making the work easier. With this system one person could grind about 30kg in one day.

Work needs to be done to find out the degree of fineness the consumer wants. The grinding mills then need to be set so that they produce the desired ground product.

For small-scale production (up to 100kg/day, a series of these grinders is all that is needed. For larger scale production units, a mechanical grinder would be required.

Mechanical grinding mills

Horizontal plate, vertical plate or hammer mills are suitable for grinding pepper. A grinding mill has to be placed in a separate and well-ventilated room because of dust.

As above the grinding mill needs to be adjusted so that it grinds the pepper to the desired fineness.

Packaging material

Packaging of pepper especially if it is ground requires polypropylene. Polythene can not be used as the flavour components diffuse through it.

Simple sealing

The bags can be sealed simply by folding the polypropylene over a hacksaw blade and drawing it slowly over the flame of a candle. However, this extremely uncomfortable as the hacksaw blade heats up and can burn the hands of the operator. However, this is a very common technique.

Sealing machines

A sealing machine will speed this operation up considerably and produce a much tidier finish (which is very important).

The cheapest sealing machines have no timing mechanisms to show when the bag is sealed and they have a tendency to overheat.

Sealing machines with timers are desirable. The machines come in many sizes. For most work an 8 inch (20cm) sealer is sufficient. Eye catching labels should be sealed above the product in a separate compartment and holed so the package can be hung up in the shop.

A well designed and secure store is essential. The optimal conditions for a store are a low temperature, a low humidity and free from pests. The store should be located in a shaded, dry place. To keep humidity as low as possible only fully dried products should be stored in it. The produce should be checked regularly and if it has absorbed too much moisture it should be dried again.

To prevent rodents entering, the roof should be completely sealed. Mosquito netting should be placed over the windows and doors should be close fitting.


moisture content % by weight Max

extraneous matter % by weight Max

lights % by weight Max

pinheads % by weight Max

International Standards Organization





British Standards





American Spice Trade Association Standards





Other products of pepper
White pepper

To produce white pepper the pepper berry is not harvested until it is bright red. The red berry is detached from the spike and soaked in gunny bags in a stream for over a week. The water in the stream should be clear to prevent discoloration. After removal the bags are trampled on until the pericarp is removed. The white peppercorns are thoroughly washed and dried.

Decorticated black pepper

This is black pepper that has had its outer skin removed mechanically. It is used as a substitute for white pepper when white pepper is in short supply.

Green pepper

Green pepper is when immature pepper berries are artificially dried or preserved in brine, vinegar or citric acid. They are popular in France.

Pepper oleoresin

This is extracted from black pepper by solvent extraction and is used to flavour foods.

Black pepper oil

The pepper is crushed and then undergoes steam distillation.

Pickled green pepper

Immature green pepper is pickled in vinegar or brine. This is very popular in France and West Germany.

Freeze dried green pepper

This is made in West Germany from imported green pepper corns, preserved in brine.

Rose pepper

This is when over ripe red pepper berries are preserved in brine, vinegar.

We strive for excellence, investing in and embracing innovation.

Our temperature-controlled, one-of-a-kind packhouse facility is equipped with the latest innovations in fresh produce packing technology.
Our skilled teams pack our peppers into multiple formats to suit customer requirements, using cutting edge automation and smart technology.
We like to challenge the way we do things. Investing in new technologies and innovations helps us to continually improve our products and services.
Dick Houweling, Tangmere Airfield Nurseries Managing Director