It can tell ripe produce from unripe, gently clasp and sort the fruit and pick more than seven times as many strawberries in a day than a human worker.
It is a device called Rubion, a strawberry-picking robot devised by Belgian engineers at robotics company Octinion.
The robot uses photonics sensors to navigate through crops and select ripe strawberries based on the wavelengths of light they give off. It then picks the fruit with a soft-touch gripper that prevents bruising and then sorts it into punnets.
“Thanks to robotics, we have so many possibilities, much more than a human could ever do,” said Octinion CEO Tom Coen.
“Harvest prediction, picking according to market needs, simply picking when the berries are ripe instead of when workers are available — these are just a few examples of what is possible as of today for a grower.”
The company is looking to produce robots for other crops in coming years.