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Innovator Spotlight:
Westlandse Plantenkwekerij (WPK)

Gravenzande, Netherlands

A propagator of greenhouse vegetable plants and flowers

Nestled in the Southwest of the Netherlands near the shores of the North Sea, in the ancient town of ’s-Gravenzande, Westlandse Plantenkwekerij (WPK) is the established authority on young plant cultivation in Europe. Founded in the 1930s by Arie van der Arend, the family business has grown alongside his five children. Today, WPK has four locations in two areas: The Westland and the province North-Brabant. In each location, a modern greenhouse serves for the propagation of hot vegetable plants, tray plants for field-scale horticulture, and potted plants for their House & Garden brand. It is critical for young plant producers to be able to grow a variety of plants in the same facility. This is also true for the joint cultivation location of WPK and Plantenkwekerij P. van Geest in ’s-Gravenzande. Recently, they upgraded their supplemental lighting to include Fluence LEDs in a hybrid lighting set up. HPS lights account for 1/3 of the total light intensity, while Fluence LEDs provide with 2/3 most of the light intensity. This new hybrid configuration leverages Fluence’s broad white spectrum LEDs to reduce power costs while simultaneously increasing total light levels by more than 30% compared to only HPS with the same installed power. Additionally, the high blue content of the broad spectrum Fluence LEDs supports a compact young plant and a healthy, strong root development. WPK makes the world a little greener each day. Fluence is committed to lighting the way.

Project Overview

Cultivator Name:Westlandse Plantenkwekerij
Location:Gravenzande, Netherlands
Crop:Tomatoes, Bell Peppers, Cucumbers, Fruit Crop Plants, Tray Plants, Special Tray Plants, Flowery Potted Plants
Fluence Fixture:VYPR 3p BW4
Type of Facility:Greenhouse
Regional DLI: 4.3 Mol/m2/day (December)
Results:• Increased overall intensity by 30%
• Increased sustainability by decreasing power consumption by 40-50%
• Improved growth and crop quality

Challenges

Westlandse Plantenkwekerij and Fluence LEDs Challenge 1
Westlandse Plantenkwekerij and Fluence LEDs Challenge 2
Westlandse Plantenkwekerij and Fluence LEDs Challenge 3

Pre-implementation Challenges:

  • The most common challenge for any greenhouse is supplementing the necessary additional light during the cold and dark winter months when the average DLI is low
  • WPK’s older HPS technology is less efficient than LEDs, more expensive to operate, and radiates more heat, which can lead to greater fluctuations in temperature, humidity, and microclimates
  • WPK wanted a hybrid strategy that increased light intensity while maintaining some infrared heat from HPS

Goals:

  • Find a spectrum that mixes well with natural light for uniformity and serves a variety of crops
  • Achieve lower energy costs with more efficient solutions, especially during the expensive winter months
  • Continue or improve high plant quality through optimal light intensity and control

Achieving More
and Paying Less with LEDs

By incorporating VYPR by Fluence in a 2/3 to 1/3 HPS configuration (based on PF), WPK is realizing an estimated electricity savings between 40-50%, based on early results. On top of this, WPK increased total light levels by 30% due to the overall efficiency of LEDs (compare HPS at 35 umol/m2/s to LEDs at 60 umol/m2/s). The post-installation harvests across many varieties showed the plants to be more compact, generative, vigorous, and darker/richer in color. As Erik van der Arend notes, “The interesting thing about the lighting chosen by Fluence is the right degree of cooling. The luminaire doesn’t get very hot. Moreover, the spectrum is widely applicable.”

Westlandse Plantenkwekerij and Fluence LEDs Result 3

Increased overall light intensity by 30% with same electricity inputs

Westlandse Plantenkwekerij and Fluence LEDs Result 2

Decreased power consumption by 40-50% with increased lighting

Westlandse Plantenkwekerij and Fluence LEDs Result 1

Improved growth and crop quality through uniformity and broad spectrum technology

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