|Kimberly Kroslak of Great Northern Hydroponics accepts the award on behalf of the company. Making the presentation is local MPP Bruce Crozier.|
The company's natural gas-fired heat and power generator is efficient, saves money and is environmentally responsible. It generates enough energy to sell 12 megawatts into the grid. In addition to electricity production, hot water and carbon dioxide from the co-generation facility is used by the company for heating and fertilizing crops in its 50-acre hydroponics greenhouse.
The project earned Great Northern a regional Premier’s Award for Agri-Food Innovation Excellence. The five-year, $2.5-million program – announced as part of the 2006 provincial budget – recognizes that farmers have always been innovative in the running of their businesses and will foster even greater innovation across the province’s agri-food sector.
There will be up to 55 regional award winners annually, with a cash prize of $5,000 each.
“Ontario’s agri-food industry continues to evolve, adapting to a range of new realities and increased global competition,” said Premier Dalton McGuinty. “It is thanks to the spirit of innovation that prevails among the members of this dynamic sector that these 21st-century challenges are being effectively addressed – and turned into winning ideas.”