Wholesum Family Farms, an 81-year-old, family-owned pioneer in organic farming in Sinaloa, Mexico, has flipped the switch on a 100-kW photovoltaic solar energy system at the company’s Nogales, Ariz. headquarters.
“It is one more step in our continuing sustainability effort,” said Ricardo Crisantes, general manager. “We want the concept of sustainable agriculture to evolve beyond the farm.”
Earlier steps, he said, included upgrading the lighting systems in the Nogales-based corporate headquarters and distribution center, implementing a recycling program, conducting employee training sessions on sustainability and installing motion sensors and energy monitors in coolers
“The cheapest energy is the energy you don’t consume,” Crisantes said.
The company viewed solar energy as another way of promoting sustainability.
The solar array is projected to supply about half of the Nogales operation’s total energy needs, he said.
Crisantes declined to reveal the cost of the solar project, but said that rebates and reduced energy costs would permit Wholesum to recapture its investment within five years.
Wholesum Family Farms ships organic tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, eggplants, mangos, squash and zucchini throughout the U.S. under the Wholesum Harvest label.