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UK strawberry grower completes facility expansion

Dyson Farming's extension of Lincolnshire-based strawberry facility has been successfully designed and built.

After the successful completion of a six-hectare facility built at the site in 2020, the CambrdigeHOK team was again appointed to build an additional 4.7 hectares of growing space.

Having gained design approval, they returned to site in April 2023 and completed the construction for handover, to the agreed timescale, in December 2023.

Following the extension, the glasshouse is 760m long with 1456 rows of strawberries and 1,225,000 strawberry plants which will produce 1,250 tonnes of strawberries each year for British consumers.

To provide a 15 percent increase in grow space, they designed a bespoke hanging, swinging gutter system that creates space for an extra row of plants every eight meters.

A climate control computer system adjusts the temperature in the glasshouse to maintain the optimal growing conditions for the finest quality strawberries.

Rainwater is harvested from the glasshouse roof, stored in a lagoon, and used to irrigate the plants. The hanging gutters, which hold the plants, 'swing' from side to side to allow 15% extra crop to be grown in the same area.

The site also has a packhouse and cold store facilities allowing Dyson Farming to pick, chill, pack, and deliver fresh fruit to the end customer as quickly as possible.

Understanding the day-to-day challenges of the grower
Angel Angelov, Glasshouse Manager at Dyson Farming, says the expertise of the CambridgeHOK team has been essential in the success of both phase one and phase two of the project.

"The knowledge behind CambridgeHOK is really good and being part of a wider group means they have all that knowledge available and accessible," he said.

"Having somebody who understands growing, like the CambridgeHOK team , is very important, as with some of the other companies, it's all about engineering and structure, but it is important to have that understanding of the day to day challenges for the grower when it comes to the operation of the facilities, and the aftersales support as well."

Steve Baker, Commercial Director at Dyson Farming, said: "Ultimately we are farmers and we grow crops and we are experts in that, but we are not experts in designing and building a glasshouse.

"We can have input into what will work best from a growing perspective, but the experts in building the facility and getting to the right specifications are CambridgeHOK.

"I think they get where we're heading, they understand the demands that we have, the understand the quality that we expect, not just in terms of the build but in terms of everything that goes around a large project like this.

"CambridgeHOK get that and understand it, and we rarely have any issues during the build process which is credit to the team and how well they manage that."

For more information:
Tel: +44(0)1430 449440
[email protected]

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