This research and extension program focuses on developing and evaluating machinery for improved fruit and vegetable production. The goal of the program is to help growers utilize equipment more efficiently and in a more environmentally sound manner. Technologies and systems developed are intended to provide applied engineering solutions to problems facing Arizona agriculture. Through better utilization of equipment resources, this program aims to improve the profitability, sustainability and environmental soundness of specialty crop production systems.
Columbus apparently brought it to the new world and now it's the world's most popular salad plant. Eighty percent of the nation's lettuce crop comes out of the fertile, dark soils of the Salinas Valley, but there has never been a successful way to mechanically thin the crop. That could be changing with the development of an automated lettuce thinner and weeder that was demonstrated in the valley last May.