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Edward Baarda Ltd is a privately owned horticultural business based at Elloughton, East Yorkshire. The company specialises in growing salad crops and produces in excess of 1.6 million kgs of tomatoes and 1.5 million cucumbers every year. The company’s primary outlets for it’s produce are Waitrose and Morrisons supermarkets.
Supplying the UK’s major food retailers is not a trivial task. All have internal targets to reduce carbon emissions and many bring pressure to bear on their supply chain partners to do the same. As heat is the primary energy demand in horticulture, Baarda’s looked to tackle the carbon issues around it before turning their attention to greening up their electricity use. Since 2012 the company has installed straw and woodchip fueled biomass boilers and two wood pellet fired CHP units. Having succeeded in greatly reducing its use of fossil fuels in heating, attention turned to renewable electricity generation and in particular the need to satisfy a seasonal demand.
The main use for electricity in the growing of salad crops is to run irrigation pumps, CO2 distributors and crop grading, packing and cooling equipment. As crop production peaks in the summer months, so solar pv is the ideal solution for satisfying the increased electricity demand.
“Whilst our needs and desires to improve our green credentials and reduce our dependence on fossil fuels has been a key focus over recent years, we are also ever mindful of the financial strength of our business. Our new solar pv array will generate green power for just 1.6p per kWh. This is an 87% reduction on today’s open market value of electricity! Boston Renewables have done a great job for us and we’d have no hesitation in recommending them to other businesses.”
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