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US (CA): Grower transitions from HID lighting to gridlighting

Signify has installed Philips GreenPower LED gridlighting at Balanced Los Angeles, a premium cannabis cultivator located in southern California. The Philips LED team provided Balanced Los Angeles with lighting and environmental strategies to help the Balanced team maximize their production, gain greater operational efficiency, reduce the production cost, and achieve a more consistent flower under the new gridlighting installation.

Like many legacy cannabis cultivators, Balanced Los Angeles used HID lighting throughout their grow facility. However, with a desire to increase yield per square foot and better manage energy costs, the company began exploring double rack growing, which led them to gridlighting.

Introduced in 2023, gridlighting, is designed to support indoor cannabis cultivators in optimizing their grow space through multi-tier growing. The gridlighting is designed with a high-quality polycarbonate lens covering, which provides exceptional light uniformity at low free space. Balanced Los Angeles experienced the benefits of this feature firsthand. Augie Simoncici, Balanced Los Angeles head grower, explained, "We've noticed a better penetration to our lowers, seen a better terpene profile, the flavors are getting better, and I'm seeing consistent flower from top to bottom."

One first-hand benefit that Balanced Los Angeles experienced is that gridlighting emits most of their energy as growth-stimulating PAR light. Whereas more than 50% of the energy from HIDs is put out as heat, which makes it challenging to manage the grow climate and control energy usage. Simoncici said, "With these Philips LEDs, we use a lot less air conditioning to cool the rooms and less dehumidification."

Gridlighting is dimmable with most used 0-10V controls, this allowed Simoncici to adjust light intensity at times during the grow cycle and hit his PPFD target. With better light penetration to the lower part of the cannabis plant, it allows the nug to grow bigger and get more color. "It's reduced our small-to-big ratio, so the bag is a lot more consistent," Simoncici added.

Comprehensive support
A team consisting of a Philips Horticulture Key Account Manager, a Plant Specialist, and an Application Engineer guided Balanced L.A. in the installation and transition from HID lighting to gridlighting. "LED works differently than HID lights than most growers are accustomed to. So, it's not only about installing the light but also creating the customized environmental strategy that could deliver the best quality flower," Ted Fitzgerald, Plant Specialist at Philips Horticulture Solutions, explains.

Simoncini said, "With the partnership between Balanced Los Angeles and the Philips Horticulture team, our results have been amazing, and their support has been tremendous. With the result from this installation, I believe this is just the beginning of something great."

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