The Salinas Valley is the world’s largest grower/shipper of broccoli. Broccoli was harvested in the fields, placed in bins and trucked to packing sheds where it was dumped onto conveyors and distributed to workers stations where it was bunched and secured by wire ties before being placed in cartons prior to shipment. During transit, the broccoli bunches dehydrated. This required that the grocery store personnel would have to re-adjust the tension of the wire ties which also had rusted during tranport.
A machine was developed and patented by my company that applied rubber bands to the broccoli bunches. Not only were rubber bands a better way to secure the product, but it could be done in the field eliminating unnecessary handling and damage but a simple $1,000 machine replaced a complicated $10,000 unit. The company not only revolutionized how broccoli was packaged but sold over one million pounds of rubber bands a year to the produce industry. Several other industries and companies outside of produce became users of the rubber band technology.
Seaco Industries developed a rubber band applicator that fully automated the sorting and banding of mail. Pitney-Bowes awarded a one million dollar contract for the purchase of this technology.
I also innovated and developed the process for the printed rubber band, which is still widely used on many produce products.