energy savings and management strategies from 360 Energy:

Switching your lights on can save you energy

For almost any greenhouse grower, the monthly energy bill accounts for a large part of the production costs. Yet not many growers are aware of what these costs are comprised of and, more importantly, how to reduce them. Pete Hendriksen of Ceegreen encourages growers to take advantage of the services of 360 Energy, an energy consulting firm that has achieved great results in saving energy at several leading Canadian greenhouse companies. "Energy saving is becoming a worldwide topic, finally also greenhouse growers see that they need to act."

Hendriksen explained that it makes sense that many in the greenhouse industry are not always aware of their input costs. "A grower is a grower and not an energy manager. Of course he knows what the energy costs are because he sees the bill, but in most cases a grower is not aware of how these input costs are being generated."

"It is complicated and time consuming for them. Now that electricity prices are increasing by the day, particularly in Ontario, growers are becoming more interested in gaining know-how on the subject. There are growers who were thinking about kicking their lights out and stopping their year round production, just because the cost of the lights got out of hand. This is totally not necessary."

Complicated market

According to Hendriksen, the Canadian energy market is too complicated for greenhouse growers to take simple actions. It's not very transparent: "There are a lot of regulations and there is a lot of company bureaucracy from energy suppliers and institutions. You will need to obtain a lot of specific knowledge available on all this before you can even see where you can make improvements." Many growers and their managers believe they are already doing a good job managing their energy. The problem is that they do not even know what they do not know. Believe Pete, 360 Energy will prove to customers, energy savings and management strategies, the general energy industry does not want to share.

Transparent expenses

Hendriksen explained that 360 Energy has an excellent level of knowledge on how to handle the government regulations and energy company bureaucracy. "Most growers haven't got the time or the ability to understand all of these rules and protocols. Or they may have a staff member or two dedicated to this task, but cannot handle hour to hour, and in some instances, minute to minute energy management decisions. This does not even take into account multiple energy purchasing types, sites, or quantities. The team of experts at 360 Energy can assist and manage the total journey to energy excellence for greenhouses. 360 Energy will make all energy costs transparent and help the owners, growers, team leaders, production managers, logistics managers, marketing managers, accountants, and upper management understand how to make big improvements in total energy management with no loss in production, and in some cases even an increase in production.

"It's like having an energy managing team made up of industry energy professionals and engineers available 24/7 for your enterprise that is not an on-site employee", Hendriksen said. "The 360 team consists of a group of people with many years of experience; they guide the greenhouse owners team on how to get energy at the best price, how to use energy, when to use it, why to use it and where to use it. But they never take title; they are not buying and selling for the grower. 360 Energy provides a proven program with an industry leading team to guide the grower’s team of employees to success."

Hendriksen gets the introductions going between greenhouse growers and 360 Energy. After the introduction, Hendriksen follows up a maintenance program between 360 Energy and the organization that hires them to make sure that expectations are achieved.

"Every greenhouse is different, so each company deserves a different approach. Currently we are very busy with growers that use supplemental lighting. They are high energy users, and often are not aware of how much money they can save by applying simple adjustments in their energy strategy."

“The Canadian system regulates a lot of specific knowledge. "Each grower and greenhouse requires a different strategy. Whether they are in Alberta or in Ontario, it's a unique challenge to achieve good results. Not by the day, not by the hour, but sometimes by the minute. Sometimes there are snapshots by the minute where you can achieve good results, it comes that close. It's not something simple that anybody can do, you will need to have the knowledge of the experts at 360 Energy.”"

If it was up to Hendriksen, every grower would take a look at their energy bill and put a focus on better energy management. "Every grower should take advantage of 360 Energy. There is no reason why not to do it; growers do not need to add any infrastructure or hard or software. You just add cross company, team knowledge, there are no extra capital costs, and it saves you money, which makes the bottom line black instead of red."

See also:

For more information:
Peter Hendriksen
T: 289.407.6420

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