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Interko Pioneers Containerised Ripening Room

Interko Pioneers Containerised Ripening Room
Press Release

The mobile, space-saving system is the result of five years of research and development in partnership with Fyffes.

MOERKAPELLE, NETHERLANDS – Interko – the designer, manufacturer and installer of the world’s most advanced fresh fruit ripening rooms – is proud to unveil its pioneering Containerised Ripening Room following five years of research and development in partnership with multi-national tropical fruit importer-marketer Fyffes.

During that time, Interko has built, installed and tested 120 ripening containers exclusively for Fyffes, resulting in a proven turnkey system that offers a mobile, space-saving, multi-functional and high quality option to ripen fresh fruit anywhere in the world.

The solution works by constructing a ripening room inside a standard insulated refrigeration container, either retrospectively or from scratch, thereby turning the container itself into a ripening room. The container can be used to ripen to perfection bananas, avocados and mangoes, among other fruits, such as apricots, either at the source or in the destination market.

Interko’s Containerised Ripening Room opens a new door of possibilities to operators looking to add value to their fruit through ripening. It is designed to suit operators who want the flexibility of moving their room to a different location by truck or ship; for those who have inadequate infrastructure or space to house a standard-sized ripening room; for those who do not own their building and cannot invest in a permanent facility, or for those who need to respond quickly to a spike in demand on the spot market. Operators have the further option of either purchasing or leasing the system from Interko.

Chris Maat, Managing Partner/Director at Interko, comments: “Interko first attempted to design a ripening container in 1999, and there have been other attempts within the industry. Now, after working with Fyffes for the past five years, Interko has tested and refined this system to the point where we have 120 container rooms operating successfully. I don’t think any other manufacturer can claim that achievement. The Interko Containerised Ripening Room is another example of our continued drive for innovation.”

Measuring 2.6 metres wide by approximately 12 metres long, Interkos Containerised Ripening Room can hold 20 full-sized pallets each stacked with up to 9 boxes of fruit. True to the Interko range, the system has been designed with energy efficiency in mind, plus it is quick to deploy. Considering the small dimensions of a container, the mechanical design is bespoke, including its own fan design. A gas-tight, high-speed roll door can also be provided for ease of access. The container is supplied with a small control room.

Maat explains: “The advantage of having a smaller space is the reduced volume of free air that is contained within the room, which allows for more direct control over the ripening process, compared with a standard ripening room. The operator relies on the sensors and control system, rather than walking down the middle aisle to monitor the development of the fruit.”

Maat continues: “We have proven over the last five years that it is possible to ripen fruit to perfection without manual controls or inspections. In fact, we have found an improvement in fruit quality precisely because operators must follow a stringent ripening process via the control room, rather than allowing themselves to be influenced by physical inspections. Interko is a global leader when it comes to fruit ripening innovation. We have spent five years testing and perfecting our Containerised Ripening Room prior to this commercial launch; our science is robust!”


Interko is the global leader for the design, manufacture and installation of cost-effective, high-quality and low-maintenance ripening rooms for fresh fruit, and cooling systems for the horticulture sector. Founded over 50 years ago in the Netherlands, Interko develops precise, advanced and energy-efficient systems that are built to last. Since its creation, Interko has installed over 7,000 ripening rooms for bananas, avocados, mangoes, papayas and tomatoes – the earliest of which are still in operation and performing well today. Every year Interko installs around 200 ripening rooms.

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Interko achieves breakthrough with energy consumption of new ripening room fan

Dutch innovator will share its latest technological advances at Fruit Logistica 2017

Interko has raised the bar higher in its commitment to developing advanced ripening solutions for the global fresh fruit and vegetable industry.

The Dutch manufacturer has achieved a breakthrough with the energy efficiency rating of its new range of reversible ripening room fans, which are now supplied under the brand name RƎVERSO.

“Interko is the first company to manufacture a ripening room fan that achieves an energy consumption level below 100 watts per pallet at full airflow, which is fantastically low,” reveals Chris Maat, the managing partner of Interko. 

“This development will translate into considerable cost savings for our customers. Reducing energy usage and costs as much as possible is critical for many of our clients today. They also want greater flexibility, and quality is vital, of course. 

“That’s why we are constantly innovating,” Chris continues. “Client satisfaction is of paramount importance to Interko. We’re committed to developing bespoke solutions that make for extremely energy-efficient and cost-effective fruit ripening rooms to suit customers both large and small.” 

The RƎVERSO reversible fan range provides efficient air movement technology and full user-controllability within a ripening room. The fans can be controlled simply and individually, meaning they can be switched off in any unloaded bays at any given stage.

The fans can also be linked to the fully-integrated and unique Interko Smart ripening control system. This allows for precision ripening and monitoring of the ripening process to a degree that has not previously been possible.

Interko invites produce professionals to learn more about the RƎVERSO fan range at the world’s largest fresh fruit and vegetable trade show, Fruit Logistica 2017. The fair takes place in Berlin, Germany, on 8-10 February. Interko will exhibit in Hall 1.2, B-11.

“We welcome visitors to come and meet our team to discover more about the tailor-made ripening solutions and heat exchangers we offer,” Chris says. 

Record results

Every day 4 million boxes of fruit are ripened in Interko rooms worldwide. The business is expanding significantly and after closing 2016 with record results, Chris says the company is looking forward to a promising future.

“Thanks to the increasingly broad-based geographical distribution of our business, we have delivered our strongest performance to date,” Chris explains. 

“During the last 12 months we have built over 200 ripening rooms across the world; with orders coming from Europe, South America, Asia and beyond.” 

This year Interko is eager to build upon its heritage as a leading provider of fresh fruit ripening systems. At the same time the company continues to provide its clients with premium service and after-sales support. 

“A service-oriented approach has been the hallmark of our business since Interko began some 40 years ago, and, driven by our desire to provide our customers with distinctive ripening innovation, we remain as committed as ever to our long-term partnerships,” Chris says. 

Meet Interko at Fruit Logistica!

Fruit Logistica
Hall 1.2, Stand B-11
8-10 February 2017
Berlin, Germany