TADD – or the Trainable Anomaly Detection and Diagnosis system – is able to “detect, identify and quantify many of the common blemishes affecting potatoes”, Dr Tom Duckett of the University of Lincoln told the BBC.
The key innovation, in Mr Duckett’s view, is the learning software which is trained by a human expert to identify diseased or damaged produce.
“Existing computer vision systems have to be programmed and calibrated. Our system is different it learns from some samples provided from a human expert,” he said.
TADD is only a vision system at present, but just spotting an off-colour spud is harder than it sounds.
“When potatoes get too much light they tend to go green, but in red potato varieties greening looks more black,” said Mr Duckett.