It’s been such an incredibly abundant apple season. This is my 2nd season helping with the fruit harvest and playing the role of rock-picker, making sure as few rocks, sticks and terribly rotten fruit make it to the press line. It involves standing on the trailer of the fruit sweeper dogging apple branches and flying fruit to pick-out anything unwanted as the bin fills up.It’s a bumpy ride, but worth it to ensure our big fruit grinder does not get jammed up.
From the harvest-bin the apples move by folk lift to the conveyor and into the grinder. They are ground into a pulp fine enough to be pumped though a hose and into the wonderfully named “Good Nature Squeeze Box” which is the accordion-like press that squeezes all the juice out of the ground up apples.
It’s been neat to see just how quickly we can sweep up a bin full of fruit. One row of Empires gave us almost 6 bins of fruit! And with each bin makes around 250 L of juice and it takes about 20 bins to fill our large storage tanks.