The thriving greenhouse industry in Southwestern Ontario is accompanied by challenges of changing legislations, water availability, labor shortages, and corporate social responsibility. Responding to the increasing demand for effective solutions that support growers in making their production more sustainable, Ridder Canada moved into a new and larger location in Leamington, Ontario.
To commemorate the opening of the new location at 229 B Talbot St. W., Leamington, Ontario, Ridder organized an Open House on September 9. In the presence of growers and partners of Ridder, Mayor Hilda MacDonald of the Municipality of Leamington officially opened the new location.
Mayor Hilda MacDonald of the Municipality of Leamington (middle) with the team of Ridder North America
Serving the local industry
Ridder’s Canadian office is one of the 7 international locations of the Dutch developer of advanced greenhouse technologies. “We have been present with a local office in Canada for more than 10 years. The forward-thinking and innovative mindset of the local growers, greenhouse manufacturers, and installers has always been the driver to establish our local business to serve this growing industry”, says Wil Lammers, General Manager at Ridder North America. “Current trends related to changing laws and legislations, labor scarcity, supply of fresh water, and increasing energy prices have made our local service and solutions even more relevant.”
Lammers explained that the services and solutions of Ridder include various innovative new technologies that help growers cope with significant challenges. “Currently, growers are struggling with all sorts of challenges in the field of labor, from having trouble finding enough skilled workers to keeping the workforce productive as operations get larger and harder to manage. In Southwestern Ontario, we are helping many greenhouse companies with this; we have a complete suite of labor management systems available that help them to gain insight, get a grip on their costs, and handle their workforce more efficiently. During the open day, we showed our latest solutions, and we even discussed one of the most innovative solutions for the tight labor market: our GRoW Tomato Harvesting Robot.
Ridder has been active in the Canadian market since the early 70s. Lammers: “At Ridder, we believe that controlled environment agriculture is necessary to provide food for an ever-growing population of our plant. The first solutions we offered in this market were our drive technologies for controlling greenhouse vents. Since then, we have obtained many local partners and customers. Over the years, our portfolio has been completed with many additional technologies, from climate control to irrigation systems and screening systems. This is what makes us unique today; we can help growers with a complete line of smart, connected solutions that are designed with the aim to increase the control of the greenhouse environment, crop growth, and operations by using a plant-centric approach.