14 Sep Fluence Collaboration With Dutch Propagator WPK Creates Immediate Improvements in Plant Quality and Uniformity
One of the top propagators in the Netherlands, Westlandse Plantenkwekerij, implemented a hybrid lighting approach using Fluence’s VYPR fixtures, resulting in increased quality and control over environmental factors
AUSTIN, Texas & ROTTERDAM, Netherlands (Sept. 13, 2022)—Fluence, a leading global provider of energy-efficient LED lighting solutions for commercial cannabis and food production, announced today its collaboration with Westlandse Plantenkwekerij (WPK), a large Dutch propagator specializing in young plant cultivation for greenhouse horticulture in Europe.
Originally founded in the 1930s by Arie van der Arend, WPK is a multi-generational family business now run by van der Arend’s descendants, Erik and Eviek. As a propagator, WPK oversees the seed-to-plant process for vegetable and tray plants for growers throughout Europe. The company’s scientific approach to cultivation has led to decades of success, ultimately driving WPK to enlist Fluence’s help to install research-backed LED lighting at their ’s-Gravenzande facility, jointly owned with Plantenkwekerij P. van Geest, for the very first time.
WPK introduced Fluence’s VYPR Series top lights alongside existing legacy high-pressure sodium (HPS) fixtures to harness the unique control a hybrid lighting approach offers for optimizing environmental factors—including controlling ambient heat. The hybrid lighting model at WPK’s facilities has led to better management of seasonal growing conditions and notable energy savings.
“After installing Fluence’s LED lighting solutions, we learned that young plants thrive in LED-lit environments,” said Erik van der Arend, managing director of WPK. “This has allowed us the flexibility to grow a wide range of crops in the same environment and under the same lighting conditions, decreasing hassle and improving our energy costs. The transition to Fluence has helped improve plant quality and speed of development, ensuring our customers get a uniform product that is consistently excellent.”
In collaboration with Fluence’s horticultural lighting experts, WPK fine-tuned the LEDs’ spectra to optimize operational costs while maintaining superior quality for the grower’s tomato, cucumber, pepper and flower crops. Early results show that WPK is realizing an estimated electricity savings between 40 and 50% by using two-thirds Fluence LED fixtures and one-third HPS in the greenhouse. Additionally, WPK increased total light levels by 30% due to the overall efficiency of LED technology. The post-installation harvests produced more compact, generative and vigorous plants that were darker or richer in color.
“The interesting thing about Fluence’s lighting technology is the right degree of cooling—the luminaire doesn’t get very hot,” van der Arend added. “Moreover, the spectrum is widely applicable.”
“When you work with Fluence, you’re not just buying a standalone LED light. You’re tapping into a network of leading lighting and horticultural experts who can help you create the right conditions to optimize your cultivation environment,” said Timo Bongartz, general manager of Europe, the Middle East, and Africa at Fluence. “That’s why we love working with industry leaders like WPK who share our passion for developing innovative lighting and environmental control strategies.”
For more information about the collaboration, visit here.