If you enjoyed a fresh Dole pineapple or banana this year, it’s possible your tasty fruit spent some time in a CoolBot-driven walk-in cooler. Earlier this year, Dole Food Company — one of the top global suppliers of pineapples and bananas — started using the CoolBot for their operations in Honduras.
Fun fact: Honduras exported $259.2 million worth of bananas and $26.4 million worth of pineapples in 2016.
The average temperature in Honduras ranges from 74°F (23°C) to 85°F (29°C). That’s great for enjoying the country’s pristine beaches or sitting around a fire pit on an evening. But it’s not great for keeping fruit fresh long enough to sell.
The company needed a mobile solution — containers in the field that would hold the fruit at 57-59°F (14-15°C). They already had two containers for storage, but they needed a cooling system to keep the products from deteriorating too quickly. So, they installed two CoolBots and two air conditioners in each container. Choosing the CoolBot over a traditional refrigeration system saved them 80% in installation expenses.
As an ancillary benefit, the new cold storage system helped them tackle another problem they’d been having: bugs in the storage area. The insects were attracted to the sugar in the ripe fruit. Lowering the temperature to keep the fruit from ripening too quickly also keeps the bugs away!
Watch the video to hear Dole engineer Adalid Diaz speak about his experience with the CoolBot (English transcription below).
English transcription: I really thought it was going to take a long time, and in less than six hours they had installed four units. And they worked! We really needed to do this project urgently and couldn’t be happier with the outcome. Its maintenance is minimal, truthfully minimal, really almost zero. One of the experiences that we had before, due to the ripening of the fruit, was the infestation with bugs and mosquitoes in the storage area. So we had the idea of lowering the storage temperature, which we did, and it worked like a charm! The mosquitoes/bugs left the container. For us, the CoolBot technology is amazing!