"We thought we would breeze into the cannabis space, take direction from growers, and roll with the flow." But that wasn't exactly the case for Pipp Mobile Storage Systems. In 2017, vertical farming hadn't yet been dialed into perfection, and Pipp realized, rather quickly, that the legal cannabis industry was new territory for everyone.
"Our customers were looking to us to help guide the process, determine proper workflow, spacing, elevation, plant density, and other key elements that are affected by or attached to our racking systems," says Pipp's sales management team.
Freedom Green Farms
Pipp entered the horticulture space with nearly 40 years of experience in the retail industry. As a business that has traditionally selected a single market to serve and lead, the team says the company hit the jackpot with the horticulture industry.
The Walker, Michigan-based company didn't wait long to get schooled in the world of growing. Pipp attended seminars, acquainted itself with appropriate suppliers, dropped into trade shows, hired experienced growers, and developed a green thumb of its own.
"The horticulture space demands focused attention to detail, deep analysis, continual improvement, innovation, corporate strength, and staying power," says the team. "These requirements speak directly to the attributes that embody Pipp Mobile Storage Systems, Inc., and now Pipp Horticulture."
Pipp's mobile vertical grow racks, and Greenhaus grow tray systems allow cultivators to increase production by maximizing their cubic canopy footprint without increasing the square footprint of the growing room or building. Designed to meet the requirements of each and every specific customer and project, racks can be built up to 56 feet long and 16 feet high. Pipp's vertical grow racks also incorporate mobile carriages, a drive system, vertical rack structures, integrated grow trays, airflow components, anchorage, anti-tip features, catwalk platforms, and ladders.
"We're on a never-ending mission of continual product improvement and advancement." Accordingly, the company has been awarded several U.S. patents for its technological innovations.
A vision for vertical farming
Technological advancements will continue to push the horticultural industry forward and further expand its reach. According to Pipp, the future is bright for growers, and the company sees tremendous growth ahead rooted in what indoor cultivation will mean to families, cities, and the world. "Vertical farming maximizes production, reduces operating costs, and increases overall revenue per square foot by as much as three times."
"People will be accessing and consuming fresher and healthier foods, while new employment opportunities will present in major cities previously unable to cultivate locally," says the Pipp's sales team. "The possibilities are limitless, and we are humbled to have a place in it all."
The team says that when it comes to vertical farming, there have always been two primary dilemmas: rails on the floor and servicing upper levels. To address these high-demand concerns, Pipp designed a track-free carriage system as well as a mobile elevated platform.
"We see horticulture, indoor cultivation, and processing, specifically, as the future for our organization, and we are committed to hitting the ball out of the park for our customers, suppliers, employees, and all who we serve."
Pipp's Trak-Free Carriage System leaves a smooth surface with no bumps or barriers to maneuver over between racking rows, while the company's Elevate Platform System enables cultivators to walk freely along upper grow levels without being hindered by rolling ladders or scaffolding. "All rails are thoughtfully designed and meet ADA compliance standards."
Although Pipp's entry point into the horticultural industry was through the cannabis market, the company didn't want to be limited to any specific cultivation or plant processing category. Instead, the company looks forward to building and developing solutions for all growers.
Green by nature
Pipp explains that the cubic space utilization of its mobile systems is, by nature, a green-friendly phenomenon. "Less space, electricity, lighting, water, gas, and other critical resources are needed due to the efficient use of space."
"Pipp is committed to being a green-friendly supplier in the horticulture space," says the sales team. The company's recycled content for steel and aluminum products is an industry-leading 66 percent, while the majority of its packaging materials come from recycled materials. Additionally, Pipp Horticulture offers LEED certification assistance to each and every customer.
"With hundreds of projects on the go and completed installations under our belt, our company's knowledge base only continues to grow. Our in-house team includes professional engineers, CAD designers, sales support, and the most experienced cultivators in the industry to provide partners with outstanding support before and after installation."
"This is not a micromanaging culture, but rather a highly committed team that respects one another and understands that our individual performances affect and benefit the group, including our customers, as a whole," says the sales team. "We are dealing with and affecting a living product that moves to its own schedule, not ours. Because of this, our performance is essential, and we take that responsibility very seriously."