From Potential to Profits: Reaping the Benefits of Sound Lighting

From Potential to Profits: Reaping the Benefits of Sound Lighting

<![CDATA[When Jake Van Wingerden launched SunMed Growers’ first cannabis greenhouse in 2017, he brought a lifetime of horticultural experience to the table. A third-generation grower from one of ornamental horticulture’s most-celebrated families, Van Wingerden equipped the 70,000-square-foot Dutch-style greenhouse with supplemental high-pressure sodium (HPS) lighting.Looking back on what’s now known as Phase One, Van Wingerden says budget drove the choice of HPS over light-emitting diode (LED) technology. With a finite amount of cash and a tight schedule, he was focused on meeting the project’s deadline. He recalls, “I honestly didn’t put too much thought into it—HPS or LED—because I wasn’t up to speed on the LED light world.” But his base of lighting knowledge soon changed.Running Unintentional Lighting TrialsComing from ornamental bedding plants, Van Wingerden wasn’t accustomed to running a 52-week-a-year crop under supplemental lights. As he puts it, “Maryland has many cloudy days, and wintertime light stinks most of the time.” When SunMed cultivation launched and electric bills rolled in, lighting got his attention. But utility expenses weren’t the biggest eye opener as months progressed.“That first year, we saw dramatic differences between our summertime crops and our wintertime crops as far as potencies and yields. So, it was very evident within the first year or year and a half that we needed to put more lights in here,” he recalls. “Go a week with no sun in the wintertime, you’re losing money.”Van Wingerden soon started analyzing the benefits of LED lighting versus HPS. “It was a clear distinction, specifically in electrical usage,” he says. “Making the decision to go with LED was fairly easy.” Once he decided to supplement SunMed’s existing HPS lighting with LEDs, his vendor search led him to Fluence and a relationship that, like his cultivation facilities, has grown.As SunMed prospered, Van Wingerden began designing Phase…

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Source : From Potential to Profits: Reaping the Benefits of Sound Lighting

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