Freshbay, an innovative agricultural enterprise committed to sustainable and local food production, has announced a definitive CAD 29 million agreement with Novus Earth to develop a groundbreaking Geothermal Controlled Environment Agriculture (GeoCEA) project in Hinton, Alberta. The investment reflects Freshbay’s mission to spur economic growth in the Yellowhead region and marks a significant step following the successful definitive agreement with Affinor Growers signed earlier.
Alberta-based Novus Earth, a trailblazer in sustainable renewable energy solutions, is renowned for utilizing geothermal heat and power through its unique closed-loop system. The company’s cutting-edge technology will provide the linchpin for the project, making a valuable contribution to Canada’s sustainable energy future by developing and implementing decarbonized technologies.
Freshbay’s project site selection in the heart of Alberta, known for its favorable business environment, showcases its confidence in the region’s growth potential and commitment to promoting innovative agricultural practices within Canada.
The alliance of Freshbay, Affinor Growers, and Novus Earth unites the potency of closed-loop geothermal energy, advanced vertical farming, and impeccable sustainable practices. This innovative collaboration is set to carve out a niche in the emergent field of GeoCEA.
Per the definitive agreements, Freshbay is primed to construct an innovative, geothermal-heated, cogeneration-powered agricultural facility sprawling over approximately 864,000 square feet. The facility will showcase avant-garde vertical farming systems, exploiting Novus Earth’s geothermal solutions to furnish a sustainable and reliable heat and power source.
Vic Reddy, Founder and CEO of Freshbay Inc., expressed his enthusiasm about the partnership with Novus Earth. “The geothermal component is the heartbeat of this project. With their [Novus Earth’s] expertise and commitment to sustainable energy solutions, we are confident in creating a groundbreaking facility to redefine the GeoCEA industry.”
The project’s initial focus will be the cultivation of the globally-acclaimed Affinoria Fragaria strawberries. Leveraging Freshbay’s cultivation expertise, Affinor Growers’ vertical farming technology, and Novus Earth’s closed-loop geothermal system, the project is poised to yield high-quality strawberries throughout the year.
Jeff Messner, President and Co-founder of Novus Earth, hailed the partnership with Freshbay. “By harnessing the power of geothermal energy, we are revolutionizing indoor farming and driving sustainability in the agriculture sector. We look forward to this Geothermal Controlled Environment Agriculture project’s positive impact on the industry and the local community.”
This partnership underscores the shared vision of Freshbay, Affinor Growers, and Novus Earth to build a more sustainable and resilient food system, catering to the growing demand for locally sourced, nutritious produce while minimizing environmental impact.
The construction of the GeoCEA facility is anticipated to begin in late 2023, aiming for the entire operation by Summer 2024. Freshbay is eager to fulfill its commitment to supplying consumers with fresh, high-quality, sustainable produce.