Pure Sunfarms is one of Canada’s largest licensed producers of cannabis. Cultivating in Delta 3, a 1.1 million square foot high-tech greenhouse in East Ladner, British Columbia (BC), they have capacity to produce 75,000kg of dried cannabis annually. The company was established in 2017 as a joint venture between Village Farms International, Inc. and Emerald Health Therapeutics Inc. Since November 2020, Pure Sunfarms is a wholly owned subsidiary of Village Farms International, Inc. Presently, Pure Sunfarms is converting a second 1.1 million square foot greenhouse for cannabis production, which is expected to double their annual output capacity to 150,000kg.
In March 2020, Pure Sunfarms received Health Canada’s approval to operate a 65,000 square foot processing center located in the Delta 3 greenhouse facility. The processing center is designed to satisfy full European Union GMP compliance and certification requirements. Their product portfolio consists of dried cannabis flower, pre-rolls, cannabis seeds, oils, vape cartridges, and edibles, and they currently have supply agreements in BC, Ontario, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba.
Being located in BC, supplemental light is often necessary in the darker months of the year to mimic the sun and provide plants with all the spectrums of light they need to thrive. So, when it came to selecting horticultural luminaires for their greenhouse, they chose P.L. Light Systems, because of the company’s long history as a greenhouse lighting supplier in North America. Knowing they are using the industry’s most reliable HID ballasts and lamps, in addition to the fact that P.L.’s products are backed by extensive research, were also factors that contributed to their final decision on what lighting to install.
“They have always delivered on their commitments and have proven to be very flexible when plans change,” states Rob Baldwin, VP of Cultivation and Greenhouse Operations when speaking about the relationship they have built with the P.L. team. In fact, Pure Sunfarms has placed multiple orders with P.L. Light Systems over the last 3 years and has installed more than 40,000 luminaires.
Chosen for their high uniformity and ability to penetrate light deep within the canopy, their Delta 3 greenhouse is installed with 1000W NXT2 luminaires with Beta Reflectors. In the flowering stages, the growers use HPS luminaires for their tried-and-true flowering spectrum, however, in the Vegetative and Mother stages, Pure Sunfarms use a hybrid MH-HPS configuration. Since natural daylight is limited in the winter months, and with long days required in both growth stages, supplemental lighting becomes the main source of photosynthetic light for the crops. By using a hybrid MH-HPS system, it provides a wider range of wavelengths for the plants to use so they can thrive and be more productive.
In addition to the unique hybrid installation, they also use lighting strategies such as staggering the luminaires on and off, so that the transition mimics the natural light cycle at dusk and dawn throughout the year. Furthermore, the growers at Pure Sunfarms are always testing different lengths of photoperiods during flowering to ensure their plants get exactly the right amount of light they need to produce quality flower.