Methodology for selective coffee harvesting in management zones of yield and maturation
Kazama, E.H.; da Silva, R.P.; Tavares, T. de O.; Correa, L.N.; de Lima Estevam, F.N.; de Araujo Nicolau, F.E.; Maldonado Junior, W.
The non-uniformity of coffee fruit maturation is an intrinsic plant condition that is not favorable for the beverage quality. This could be overcome by using the precision harvesting approach, wherein only the ripe fruits are harvested. The objective of this work is to evaluate a methodology for selective coffee harvesting, including optimal harvester settings in each management zone. The management zones were determined according to productivity and maturity of coffee fruits. Selective harvest (with two harvester passes) is compared with one time total harvest. At the first harvest the following settings were tested: R1 = 800 and 500, R2 = 700 and 700, R3 = 1000 and 500, and R4 = 900 and 700 (m h(-1)and rpm, respectively for speed and vibration). In second step, July 2018, the settings were R1 = 900 and 950, R2 = 700 and 950, R3 = 800 and 800, and R4 = 1000 and 800. It was concluded that it was not possible to harvest only the riped fruits with any setting regardless of management zone. The tested settings do not change the amount of fruits harvested, the regulation with higher operational speed is recommended for economic reasons. Harvesting the upper third of the coffee tree first yielded better beverage quality and less sweeping coffee, but did not cover the operating costs.