From The Ergoweb® Learning Center

Ergonomics in the Orchard

With apple picking season in full swing, workers’ aches and pains growing too.

I enjoy freshly picked apples – sliced and with a smear of peanut butter – as much as I enjoy good wine. And, like the increased attention now given to ergonomics during grape harvest, ergo solutions are taking root in the orchards.

The Associated Press (AP) recently reported that a sharp rise in strains and pains among apple pickers and farm workers is promtping researchers to design equipment to cut down on injuries, much like solutions that have been implemented in vineyards.

The article cited an apple farm in New York state that is testing a new fruit bag designed to reduce back and shoulder injuries, with wider testing planned in other states.

Also, researchers in Washington state are reportedly testing high-tech orchard ladders that sound an alarm when they risk becoming unbalanced. And an orchard safety project is planned this season in California and southern Oregon.

So next time you bite into an organic red delicious, consider the positive impact ergonomics may have had in getting that apple to you…and enjoy!

Source: Associated Press