The most recent expansion of 4Evergreen Terneuzen in Westdorpe, Netherlands, was finished at the end of November. The completion of phase 3 brings the total acreage on this location to 54 hectare. The expansion project is doubling the size of the company.
In 2012 the Grootscholte brothers went looking for a good location for expanding the company. Terneuzen was an option because of rising energy costs. At that time, a number of growers from Steenbergen had settled in Terneuzen using residual heat and residual CO2 from Yara. The choice was made and in 2013 4Evergreen bought an existing greenhouse with land for new construction in Westdorpe. The empty parcel on the other side was also bought and reserved for new construction.
Phase 3 almost finished, phase 4 already prepared
Five years later there is only one phase left to build. A new greenhouse was built and put into operation in 2016. Phase 3, the greenhouse that was built this year, is in use and all preparations for phase 4 have been made. Dennis Grootscholte: “We first want things to run smoothly before we continue with the next phase, but the expectation is to be able to complete the total in 2020.”
Dennis Grootscholte of 4Evergreen says that every new part of the location in Westdorpe is almost an exact copy of the previous one. "Building a new greenhouse always requires some adjustments, but not many were needed here."
Rotated 90 degrees
An interesting fact is that the greenhouse of phase 2 is rotated 90 degrees compared to greenhouse 1. "It made sense logistically, but it is also decisive for your cultivation." The choice for the lightest possible greenhouse also has a major influence on the cultivation method. The glass that Grootscholte has chosen lets through a lot of light and almost everything in the greenhouse is white.
Sustainable cultivation is paramount at 4Evergreen. They mainly use residual heat and CO2 from neighboring Yara. This is also reflected in the installations that Stolze supplied and installed. Wherever possible, a sustainable solution was chosen. "Better to have a larger pipe with a small pump than the other way around," according to Dennis.
Stolze provided the water and electrical installation. The equipment installed for phase 3 also included many things for phase 4. The day supply silos are there and the piping is ready. Only the more specialized installations, such as the drip unit, were not included.
A pump has also been installed for pumping water between the two basins. On both sides of the road there is a basin of 85,000 cubic meters. On one side of the road the greenhouse is smaller and this installation makes it possible to distribute the water.
If there is a shortage of collected water and the pumping between the two locations is insufficient, they can use the soil drain on the site at 4Evergreen. The water, which is in the ground, is reasonably clean and can be an useful extra source in drier periods. This year for the first time a test was done with the soil drain and after a few small adjustments, this method is ready to be used in the future.
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