Havecon Horticultural Projects, Holland, is nearing completion on the construction of Green Empire Farms (GEF), a high-tech greenhouse located in Oneida, N.Y.
The new greenhouse brings Mastronardi Produce Ltd.’s internal greenhouse network to seven locations across the United States. Mastronardi Produce, Canada, is said to be the largest vertically integrated producer of greenhouse-grown fruits and vegetables sold under the SUNSET brand.
The 64-acre, 2.78 million-square-foot-plus single greenhouse is split into two phases, and is said to be the largest-ever single-build greenhouse project in North America. Green Empire Farms will grow SUNSET berries, tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers.
Construction of Phase I started in early February, and the first plants were placed this summer, on schedule. Crops in Phase II will be planted in early 2020.
“The scale of this project is enormous. At any given time during construction, we have 10-15 platforms and machines and over 75 staff working non-stop to keep pace and ensure the schedule is held,” says Henk Verbakel, chief executive officer of Havecon. “Weather was an issue throughout the construction of this project, but we and our partner Voorwinden Construction stayed true to our promises and commitments, and forged ahead no matter what. It’s teamwork at its finest.”