The Perry family has a history of innovation and stewardship that spans four generations of southern Alberta farming. Brothers Chris and Harold Perry run the farm operation located near Chin, Alberta. Today, the Perry farm is a diverse operation comprising 3,500 acres of irrigated land producing quality potatoes, sunflowers, green peas, seed canola, and a range of cereals for clients such as Frito Lay, McCain’s, Lucerne Foods, Hytech Production, and Spitz. The Perry family implements best practices and uses modern technology to demonstrate responsibility to the planet and people through environmental stewardship.

Company details

Box 210 , Coaldale , Alberta T1M 1M3 Canada

Locations Served

Memberships

Business Type:
Manufacturer
Industry Type:
Energy - Bioenergy
Market Focus:
Nationally (across the country)

This company also provides solutions for environmental applications.
Please, visit their profile in environmental-expert.com for more info.

Image

The Perry family currently has a number of innovative and green initiatives underway:

  • The farm is using 30 tons (105 kW’s) of geothermal cooling / heating for the potato storage operation, drastically reducing the power demand from conventional air conditioning and heating systems.
  • The farm has recently installed 20 kW of solar electric photovoltaic.
  • The farm currently sequesters carbon with tillage operations from the exhaust on two tractors and we intend to do more.
  • A manure compost program decreases the farm’s requirement for synthetic fertilizers.

Perry Family Farms 2020 Vision (GrowTEC’s Purpose)
Our 2020 Vision (Goal) is to reduce farm inputs (water, fuel, electricity, and synthetic fertilizer) by 20% while increasing net yields by 20%, all by 2020.The Vision was created with a baseline in 2011 and has an 8 year timeline for success.

GrowTEC’s Sustainability Initiative
GrowTEC’s vision is to establish a diverse agricultural and renewable energy industry cluster that fosters innovation, synergy, and sustainable development.  This cluster will include leading-edge technology companies with the ability to manufacture biofuels, bio-based chemicals/materials, and environmentally friendly fertilizers.  These industries will be enabled by the on-site availability of renewable electricity and heat and other valuable byproducts.

Phase 1 of GrowTEC’s vision focuses on the conversion of waste to clean energy in a biogas-fuelled power generation facility, while Phase 2 explores future industrial integration and synergistic development. The GrowTEC initiative demonstrates leadership for long-term, sustainable wealth creation and investment in Alberta’s future that can be distributed across the agricultural and waste management industry.

Phase 1 – Biogas / Renewable Energy Production Plant & Data Driven Agriculture

Phase 2 – Site Integration and New Industry Development
Growtec’s longer term business strategy integrates local businesses and municipalities to generate a new, exciting, and diverse business cluster in the region. The following areas for development have been identified and are being pursued.

Sale of Direct Power to ICT Industry – The sale of renewable power directly to a local consumer (rather than through AESO and wholesalers) would be an improved and more efficient operational/business model for Growtec.

The power supply from Growtec’s plant would be ideal for a data center operator interested in a renewably powered IT plan. Growtec will have redundancy in power and redundant fiber optic accessibility (capitalizing on the under-utilized Alberta Supernet). Growtec therefore is an ideal location for a data center or similar super-computing management center.

Growtec is collaborating with Ventus Development Services. (http://www.ventus.ca). Ventus is interested in building an integrated approach to rural development that incorporates information and communications and PICTURE – Putting I.C.T. to Use in Rural Economics.
GrowTEC is collaborating with Sunrise Ag. (http://www.sunrise-ag.ca) of Taber Alberta on a Data Driven Agriculture.

Data Driven Agriculture – The Opportunity
A picture tells a thousand words; today, through remote sensing and cyber infrastructure, a similar picture can give us millions of data points. Sunrise AG and Grow the Energy Circle have identified opportunities to fully develop precision farming practices within the irrigated regions of southern Alberta.  By integrating aerial image remote sensing and geographic information systems with controlled variable rate irrigation systems, water and fertilizer use can be managed more efficiently, and land productivity can be increased by an estimated 20%.  This can be enabled through data management and systems integration – Data Driven Agriculture.

DDA creates an opportunity for agriculture producers to be true stewards of the valuable resources we are using by having access to real time growth production data, to derive real time prescriptions that can responsibly apply inputs when and where required in season. The opportunity is to produce a better quality, higher net yield crop that benefits the entire value chain; the producer, processor and in the end the consumer, and habitant of the planet.

Our Intention
The Perry Family has a history of stewardship that spans four generations. Grow the Energy Circle Ltd. is the Farms multi-faceted venture of sustainable agriculture integrating responsible best practices, renewable energy, and real time information technology (IT).

Our intention is to demonstrate leadership for long term sustainable wealth creation and investment in Alberta's future at a very replicable scale that can be distributed across the agricultural landscape.

We are proud to be producing food for the world while being responsible to our children and Planet.

Biogas Renewable Energy
At the core of GrowTEC is the farm scale anaerobic digester (Biogas facility) which converts biodegradable waste into four by-products: methane, heat, effluent irrigation water, and soil amendments that are nutrient-rich and pathogen-free. The methane (biogas) generated by the AD is then converted into bioenergy.

This facility will produce more than our entire 4000 acre irrigated farm and year round 25,000 ton potato storage facility electricity requirements. We will essentially be off the electrical grid by 2015.

Data Driven Agriculture
DDA integrates aerial image (satellite, UAVs, and planes) remote sensing and GIS with variable rate irrigation systems.

In keeping with innovative practices, in June 2012, the farm installed two of the first variable rate irrigation systems in Canada.

Image

Data Driven Agriculture – The Opportunity
A picture tells a thousand words; today, through remote sensing and cyber infrastructure, a similar picture can give us millions of data points. Sunrise AG and Grow the Energy Circle have identified opportunities to fully develop precision farming practices within the irrigated regions of southern Alberta. By integrating aerial image remote sensing and geographic information systems with controlled variable rate irrigation systems, water and fertilizer use can be managed more efficiently, and land productivity can be increased by an estimated 20%. This can be enabled through data management and systems integration – Data Driven Agriculture or DDA.

DDA creates an opportunity for agriculture producers to be true stewards of the valuable resources we are using by having access to real time growth production data, to derive real time prescriptions that can responsibly apply inputs when and where required in season. The opportunity is to produce a better quality, higher net yield crop that benefits the entire value chain; the producer, processor and in the end the consumer, and habitant of the planet.

In 2012 Grow the Energy Circle Ltd (Growtec) initiated its 2020 Vision:

  • Reduce crop inputs by 20%
  • Increase NET yield by 20%
  • Achieve this by the year 2020!

To achieve this 2020 vision and goal, Growtec sought out the innovative production solutions experts in new precision ag technology and agronomy Sunrise AG. Guidance was sought from Together Sunrise AG and Growtec recognize the tremendous potential of precision tools presently available and originated Data Driven Agriculture. A full team of innovators and specialists in the fields of agronomy, variable rate technology, cyber infrastructure, analytics, processors and customers are required to accomplish the realization of a successful DDA program.

Frito Lay Canada has offered generous support and guidance to ensure DDA success.