Greenhouse Lighting: Bright lights, big produce (video)

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada scientists have developed a new hybrid lighting system that uses HPS lights above the crop canopy and LED lighting inside the crop canopy. The results show that this new system can improve the yield and nutritional value of greenhouse crops. See the video to learn more.

Video transcript

[An image and a maple leaf appear on screen. This is the title graphic for the video.]

Text on screen: Greenhouse Lighting, Bright Lights, Big produce

[Light, soft electronic music fades in.]

[The video opens up with an aerial view of a snow covered forest.]

Narrator: Canadian winters can be long and dark.

[Cut to a shot of a snow covered forest.]

This lack of year-round natural light impedes greenhouse production...

[Cut to a different shot of snow falling and trees in the background.]

...during the winter months.

As a result...

[Cut to an up close shot of snow covered glass and a greenhouse in the background]

...greenhouse growers need to use supplementary lighting to provide the high quality produce...

[Cut to a pan shot of cucumbers, orange peppers and red peppers with a human hand grabbing a red pepper.]

...that consumers want year-round.

[Continued pan shot of red peppers.]

But not all light is created equal...

[Cut to a pan shot of vegetable crops.]

...and crops develop and grow differently when they are supplied with alternative light sources.

[Cut to a different shot that pans upwards towards a light source]

Greenhouses currently use High Pressure Sodium, or HPS lights.

[A text box slides into view from the left side]

Text on screen: HPS Lights

They have a low capital cost, but you can’t adjust the quality of the light.

[Shot of light source hanging from the ceiling directed towards the crops with animated white heat waves]

And they can get very hot – up to 300 degrees - which means that plants could burn if the lights are too close.

[Shot of AAFC researcher, Dr. Xiuming Hao holding up a Light Emitting Diodes, or LED lights]

Light Emitting Diodes, or LED lights...

[Cut to a close-up shot of the LED lights.]

...are a new state-of-the-art technology.

[Cut to different shot of the vegetable crops lit up by blue and red LED lights.]

They provide higher quality light...

[Cut to a different shot of pink LED lights hanging from the ceiling pointed towards the crops.]

...with customizable intensity, direction...

[Cut to a close up shot of the 3 dials on the LED light control panel written beneath these dials are Red, White and Blue with a switch that has an illustration of an eye and of a leaf.]

...and colour settings.

[Cut to a shot of fuchsia LED light hanging inside of a crop canopy]

They also have a lower surface temperature than HPS lights...

[Cut to a different shot of the hanging fuchsia LED light facing an unripen tomato.]

...so they can be used right inside the crop canopy.

[Cut to a shot of AAFC researcher, Dr. Xiuming Hao examining a crop with another man]

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada scientists, Dr. Xiuming Hao from the Harrow Research and Development Centre...

[Cut to different AAFC researcher, Dr. Rong Cao sitting in his office with a computer monitor in view.]

...and Dr. Rong Cao from the...

[The Guelph research and development centre is briefly pictured and an image of the Canadian map fades into view. A text on screen appears on the bottom right of the screen and displays an arrow pointing towards Harrow Ontario on the map.]

Text on screen: Harrow Research and Development centre, Harrow, Ontario

...Guelph Research and Development Centre, are busy developing...

[Another text on screen appears above the first text, and is pointing an arrow towards Guelph Ontario on the map.]

Text on screen: Guelph Research and Development centre, Guelph, Ontario

...a new hybrid lighting system that uses...

[Cut to a shot of the LED lights hanging from the greenhouse’s ceiling and above the crops.]

...HPS lights above the crop canopy...

[Cut to a shot of the Red and Blue LED lights inside a crop canopy containing tomatoes.]

...and LED lighting inside the crop canopy.

[Cut to as shot of Dr. Xiuming Hao examining a crop with other men.]

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is one of the leading organizations...

[Cut to a close-up of the green cucumber Dr. Xiuming Hao is examining.]

...in the world in the study of vertical lighting distribution for greenhouses.

[Cut to a shot of Red LED lights inside a tomato crop.]

The results show that this new system can improve...

[Cut to a different shot of a blue LED light inside of a tomato canopy.]

...the yield and nutritional value of greenhouse crops.

[Cut to a shot of the greenhouse crops, a text box slides into to view form the top of the screen.]

Text on screen: HPS Lights

They’ve found that by using an optimized hybrid lighting system...

[Another text box slides into view from the bottom of the screen.]

Text on screen: Far red lights

...that can deliver proper...

[Another text box slides into view form the middle of the screen.]

Text on Screen: Blue lights

...spectrums of light at different heights...

[The text boxes disappear and the previous crop canopy image remains.]

...mini-cucumber plants yield twice as many vegetables as they would in a traditional greenhouse. Twenty times more than they would in the field!

[Cut to a close-up shot of a green bell pepper being pricked by a scientific instrument.]

They’re also studying the effect of different coloured LED lights...

[Cut to a different shot of Dr. Rong Cao analyzing data on a computer screen.]

...on the production of antioxidants in greenhouse vegetables.

[Cut to a close-up shot of Blue LED lights inside a tomato crop canopy.]

Blue lights increase polyphenols that help plants to protect themselves from insects and disease.

[Cut to a close-up shot of Red LED lights inside of a tomato crop canopy.]

Red lights, on the other hand, increase carotenoids and are very good for plant growth and leaf health.

[Cut to a different shot of two men walking down a pathway with crops on either side inside of a greenhouse.]

The results of these studies may allow Canada’s greenhouse growers to conquer Canadian winters and move to full 12-month production cycles.

[Cut to a close-up shot of an individual cutting with a knife a red bell pepper off of a greenhouse crop.]

This will allow them to produce fresh vegetables throughout the winter months...

[ Cut to a different shot of a yellow bell pepper falling down a machine, landing in a basket full of yellow bell peppers and proceeding to move down a conveyor belt into the hands of a factory worker dressed in all white.]

...meeting consumer demands for high quality, local produce year round.

[Cut to a close-up shot of factory workers Packaging a variety of bell peppers in a cardboard box.]

It will also allow them to be more competitive because they will be able to edge out...

[Cut to a shot of a cargo ship loading various containers.]

...imports during the winter months and...

[Cut to a different shot of the cargo ship sailing at sea with many containers on board.]

...will be able to expand their presence on the international market.

[Cut to a shot of Dr. Xiuming Hao and a woman examining a vine of a tomato plant.]

With the help of our Canadian agricultural scientists...

[Cut to a close-up of the tomatoes being examined.]

...the sun will never stop shining on Canadian greenhouse growers.

[Cut to a pan shot of the rows of crops in a greenhouse.]

And in the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary.

[Cross dissolve.]

[Cut to the animated Canada wordmark.]

Text on screen: Canada, © Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food (2016)

[Light, soft electronic music fades out.]

[Fade to black.]

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