Solar Innovations Enhances Greenhouse Initiative

June 18, 2013
Noteworthy

To provide its employees and their families with fresh fresh fruit and vegetables, Solar Innovations Inc. has enhanced its greenhouse initiative. Working greenhouses, cold frames, and outside gardens that serve as learning tools for potential customers at its LEED Gold-certified corporate office and manufacturing facility are now maintained by Solar team members, with produce distributed throughout the company during lunch hours and break time, officials state.

 
 A working greenhouse at Solar Innovations' headquarters.

In the spring of 2012, a strawberry patch was planted, which yielded its first harvest of four quarts of strawberries in May. A week later, when the second pick took place, an additional two quarts of berries were harvested. The strawberries were distributed in the cafeteria, where employees enjoyed the fruit over lunch breaks and some team members even brought some home to their families.

Lettuce has also recently been made available to the Solar Innovations Inc. team. The lettuce was grown in a cold frame, manufactured by Solar Innovations Inc., that extends the growing seasons. The cold frames are used in conjunction with greenhouses and consist of an aluminum frame with a sloped glass lid which traps heat and encourages plants to grow while protecting them from dew and frost. Each week approximately twenty lettuce plants are harvested and distributed to team members to enjoy for lunch or share with their families.

 
Plants started in a cold frame 

Solar Innovations employees have also planted broccoli, cauliflower, lettuce, artichoke, and flowers in the cold frame. Based in Pine Grove, Pa., the manufacturer of greenhouses, sunrooms, and door and window systems strives to be an environmentally conscious leader not only within the manufacturing industry, but also within its community, executives report. By providing team members locally grown organic produce, Solar Innovations not only hopes to reduce its carbon footprint and increase self sufficiency, but also contribute to its employees’ personal health.