Henry Ginaca invents machine (the "Ginaca Machine") that automated the peeling and coring of pineapples
A Dole engineer, Henry Ginaca, invents a machine that peels, cores and cuts pineapple at the speed of 80 to 100 pineapples per minute.
Henry G. Ginaca (1876 - 1918) was an American engineer who invented, at the direction of Hawaiian pineapple magnate James Dole in 1911, a machine that could peel and core pineapples in an automated fashion. Called the Ginaca machine, the invention exponentially increased pineapple production and revolutionized the fruit canning industry. He died in the Spanish flu epidemic.
Canned pineapple was known at the very beginning of the 20th century, but wasn't financially feasible until Henry Ginaca, an engineer, invented a machine in 1911 that could remove the outer shell, inner core and both ends of 100 pineapples in less than a minute. The machine is still known today as the "Ginaca machine", and is widely used in canneries.
In 1911, pineapple magnate James D. Dole hired Ginaca to design a machine that would automate the laborious process of preparing pineapples for canning, which in those days required peeling and slicing the fruit by hand.
The first experimental model was completed within a year and was a remarkable success. The Ginaca machine, as it would be called, cut each fruit into a precisely measured cylinder, trimmed the tops and bottoms and removed the core — all at a rate of 50 pineapples per minute. Improvements to the design would eventually double its efficiency.
Ginaca's invention (variations of which are still used today) tripled Dole's production capabilities and helped to establish pineapple as a centerpiece of Hawai'i's rising agricultural economy.